Dictionaries are very useful if you know how to use them and are comfortable using them. Students know what they are but don't always use them often enough to feel comfortable with them. Therefore, this lesson is meant to help students familiarize themselves with the dictionary.
To introduce this lesson, I display a dictionary and ask students review questions such as, "What is this?", "When might we use it?", "How do I use it?", and "Why do I use it?" In this lesson, you will get a chance to use the dictionary in many appropriate ways in order to refamiliarize yourself with it and hopefully feel comfortable enough to use it whenever you need to.
Pairs of students receive a dictionary and are asked to work together in responding to the questions I pose. I ask one question at a time and ask students to find the answers in the dictionary with their partner. When student has an answer, they can raise they hand and I'll call on them. I then ask if anybody got a different answer. Before moving on to the next question, all students need to go to the correct page in their dictionary that shows the answer.
Once I've asked all the questions and students have found the answers in their dictionary, they are given a scavenger hunt to try to figure out on their own with their partner.
To close, I review the scavenger hunt questions and ask students to share their answers. The last question of the scavenger hunt is for students to find a new word that they will use at least three times that day.
I ask each students to share their word and think of how they might use it. The rest of the class hears the words of their classmates and helps to hold them accountable to using their words throughout the day.