When my oldest daughter was younger, I would take out the children’s dictionary and open it up to one new word everyday. Together, we’d read over the meaning and use it together in a sentence. Then the game for the rest of the day would be to use the word at least three times in the proper way. It was a good, old-fashioned and fun way to learn new words. My mother used to play this game with me as a child and it helped reaffirm my love of words.
As my daughter got older, I found a Word Of The Day online that was conveniently delivered to your inbox each morning, and I had her sign up for it. I signed up, too and we’d talk about what the word was on most days. Sometimes, one of us would use the word in conversation and the other would say, “Hey that was last week’s word of the day.”
In terms of learning and retaining new words, I think it’s a useful technique. Some teachers give out long lists of vocabulary words for the students to define and memorize for a test, and I tend to think this is less effective.
My son’s teacher gives his class a daily word of the day. The students define it, color in a picture that illustrates the word, and use it in a sentence in school. Once at home, their daily homework is to use it again in a sentence at night. Every week or so, they have a test that combines the recent words.
Consequently, he rarely has to study for these vocabulary because he fully retains the words and their meanings. To me, it works much better than cramming for a laundry list of words.
How does your child’s teacher teach vocabulary? Does your child learn a word of the day?