One thing I really want to focus on this year is explicit teaching of vocabulary. To avoid this becoming dry for my students I have tried to adopt various little strategies. One which I’ve used with surprising success is a simple “roll a dice” where, for each word they are learning the students roll:
1 – They have to act out the word
2 – The have to draw / sketch it
3 – They have to define it
4 – They have to create a rhyme which includes the word
5 – They have to come up with a synonym
6 – They have to come up with an antonym.
I initially had my reservations about this approach, thinking it perhaps a little childish. It is, however, working well and the proof is in the pudding as I am starting to see the original vocabulary appear in their writing and in class discussions! Hurrah!