Strong vocabulary is a vital foundation needed all academic subject areas. Unfortunately, learning vocabulary is not always enjoyable or easy for students. With Vocabulary Games for the Classroom, however, Lindsay Carleton and Robert J. Marzano have devised a way to make this important instruction something both students and teachers look forward to. Vocabulary Games for the Classroom provides K 12 teachers with thirteen games designed to build academic vocabulary. While these games are certainly fun, and teachers should capitalize on the energy and excitement they generate, they should also be seen as one part of a systematic approach to direct vocabulary instruction.
This resource includes hundreds of hand-picked vocabulary terms compiled from Marzano's work with schools, districts, and states. These vocabulary lists include terms for four different content areas language arts, math, science, and social studies across all grade levels. If a teacher's school or district has already established lists of academic terms for core content areas at each grade level, they can use the lists provided here as a supplement. Teachers should also feel free to make adaptations and additions to both the games and the provided vocabulary lists in order to enhance students' knowledge of new terminology.
The structure of Vocabulary Games for the Classroom is simple, straightforward, and easy to use. Each game begins with a brief description that includes details about which grade levels it was designed for, which subject areas it works best with, and whether the students should already be familiar with the vocabulary used or not. Next, the necessary materials are listed to help teachers prepare for the game ahead of time. Instructions to set up the game are then provided; this section includes any preparation that would need to be completed in advance. Following the set up, the game's directions are explained clearly and concisely so that the reader can visualize the game in his or her classroom. Finally, the vocabulary terms used for the game are discussed; in some cases vocabulary lists are provided, in others, the vocabulary list would be tailored to the classroom or pulled from the extensive appendix. Many games also include sample questions and exercises that can be used straight from the book.
With this resource, readers will be able to make vocabulary instruction in their classroom not only fun, but also successful.