Student Led Vocabulary Instruction

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SWBAT teach the meaning of two words to the class.

Big Idea

You learn what you teach.

Overview of the Words

10 minutes

The first thing I will do today is explain that they will each be responsible for teaching two of these words to their classmates.  I'll ask them to pay close attention to each word and decide which ones they'd like to teach.  They won't necessarily have their first choice, but they will have a choice!

Then, I'll go through and introduce the words to the students.  I'll give a brief explanation of each word.

For example: 

Dismal means dark and very gloomy.  For example, the dismal cloud appeared before the storm.  

Dismal also can mean causing misery or sadness.  For example, the dismal conditions of the school, caused it to be shut down.

 I won't really elaborate too much on each word because I want my students to do this as they teach the class about their word.  

Planning Time

40 minutes

For this activity, I will allow students to choose their own partner.  I'll go around the room having each group choose one word.  I'll cross it off on my list so that no one else can pick it.  We'll sweep around the room one more time to give everyone a second word.  If there are words left over, I will save them for students who finish early.  

Once each student has their words, I'll give them a handout explaining what they need to do to prepare to teach the class.  

I'll have them research the following items and display them with the document camera:


part(s) of speech




Besides all of this, I'll ask students to think about how they will actually teach this to their class.  Will they give some example?  Show a video?  Act something out?  

I'll have them give me an explanation of their teaching plan along with their notes on the word.  

Teaching Time

40 minutes

I will give each group a chance to teach their two words while the students fill in the information in their chart.  I am hoping that this will keep the students interested during the presentations. I will fill in any gaps if necessary as students are talking about the words.  I am probably going to stretch this out over 3 or 4 days so that the students don't receive too much information all at once.  I plan on beginning class with these vocabulary lessons for the rest of the week.  

Here are some of my students in action teaching the class about the word "incredulous."

Teaching Time 1

Teaching Time 2