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Vocabulary-Beyond Just the Meaning Shazia Nawaz, Instructor English for Academic Programs College of Continuing Education Dalhousie University Halifax,

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Presentation on theme: "Vocabulary-Beyond Just the Meaning Shazia Nawaz, Instructor English for Academic Programs College of Continuing Education Dalhousie University Halifax,"— Presentation transcript:

1 Vocabulary-Beyond Just the Meaning Shazia Nawaz, Instructor English for Academic Programs College of Continuing Education Dalhousie University Halifax, NS

2 Some questions to discuss Teaching O How many of us teach vocabulary explicitly as a separate skill? O Why? O How? _______________________________________ Assessing O How many of us assess vocabulary? O Why? O How?

3 Vocabulary & language learning O Vocabulary is primary and central to language learning process. O “Lexical competence is at the heart of communicative competence.” O “Vocabulary acquired through social cognition is more natural and easier to use.” O “In the text-based learning condition, learners largely rely on rote associative memorization between new words and their translations in L1.”

4 Cognitive domain –comprehension process Create Apply Evaluate Understand Analyze Remember

5 Limited vocabulary-a disadvantage O ESL students are at a disadvantage because they have limited vocabulary. “Most English-speaking kindergartners enter school with 6,000 to 15,000 words in their English vocabulary,” as compared to most English speaking learners.”

6 Decoding vocabulary O “…………, decoding a message is easier for them but encoding a message is rather difficult.” (Rayan,P.A., 2013) O This decoding takes place in our cognitive domain which sorts out and stores vocabulary into further dimensions.

7 Dimensions of vocabulary

8 How dimensions change O Length of stay in an ESL context O Frequent words –more exposure, more practice, more retention, more use O Less frequent words- limited exposure, lack of practice, limited retention, less use O Learner’s input, push, and motivation

9 Some other aspects to consider.. O Vocabulary size For English, a threshold of 3,000 word families (5,000 lexical items) was suggested for ‘minimal comprehension‘ (Laufer,1992), and 5,000 word families (8,000 lexical items) for reading for pleasure (Hirsh & Nation,1992) O Vocabulary tests “multiple test approach (Laufer, 1998) where each test measures a different aspect 1. Development at different stages 2. Comparison can provide evidence of development in different aspects of vocabulary dimensions

10 Vocabulary assessments

11 Controlled Active accurate, advances (n), approximate, create, destroyed, ignorance, increased, majority, safe, slow 1.The new government promised to _____________ more jobs 2.The university has slowly _____________ the number of women on the faculty. 3.She felt _____________ in her home and rarely went out. 4.In science, it's extremely important to be ____________ in one's measurements. 5.In the past, rate of scientific progress was ____________ as compared to nowadays. 6.Our candidate won a ____________ of the votes. 7.Most of the city was _____________ by the bombings. 8.The _____________ distance between New York and Chicago is three thousand miles. 9.She failed the test out of ______________, not because she doesn't have the intelligence to pass. 10.Great ______________ have been made in the field of medicine. Instructions: Complete these sentences using the words on this list.

12 Controlled Active to Free active

13 Free active O “People today are more aware than ever of the importance of regular exercise”, and “ more and more people are jogging, swimming, bicycling, and engaging in other forms of exercise” as opposed to living a physically inactive life. Do you agree that there are benefits of exercise? Outline at least three benefits of exercise. Support them with examples. ( Source: Mind, Body, and Health) mounting evidence, averaging, central concern, resist, tolerate, encouragement and support, emphasizes, ineffective, turns down

14 Free active vocabulary-controlled language & structure focus Language focus: O Organization of paragraph O Use at least 5 of the words or phrases given in the box above O Use of transitions and conjunctions O Compound and complex sentences

15 Receptive to productive Refer to the article ‘Travelling Chef’ and write ( words) about the following. Imagine you are travelling with Andrew Zimmern on one of his journeys to either Tanzania or Ethiopia. Include following information in your writing. 1. Explain where you are and what you did today. 2. Describe any interesting people you have met. 3. Describe the most significant thing you have experienced so far. O In your writing use at least four of these words: distinct, significant, diverse, interaction, reluctant, traditional. Use adjective (collocation) with these words if you can. Use proper organization of the paragraph, topic sentence, controlling ideas with supporting sentences and an appropriate ending (concluding sentence). Highlight the key words you will have used. O Proposed opening sentence. These days I am travelling with the famous food writer, Andrew Zimmern; we are in Tanzania.

16 References 1. Albert P’ Rayan 01st April 2013, The New Indian Express 2. Curriculum Development and Supplemental Materials Commission (1999). Reading/language arts framework for California public schools. Sacramento, CA: California Department of Education. 3. Laufer, B. (1995). Beyond 2000: A measure of productive lexicon in a second language. In L. Eubank, L. Selinker, & M. Sharwood Smith (Eds.), The current state of interlanguage (pp. 265–272). Philadelphia: John Benjamins. 4. Laufer, B. (1998). The development of passive and active vocabulary in a second language: Same or different? Applied Linguistics, 19, 255– Laufer, B., & Nation, P. (1995). Vocabulary size and use: Lexical richness in L2 written production. Applied Linguistics, 16,307– Learning Vocabulary in Another Language, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge (2001) 7. Long,H. Michael, Richards, C.J. (1998), editors Second Language Vocabulary Acquisition: A Rationale for Pedagogy, CUP 8. Richard, C. Jack & Long, Long, H., M. (1997). Second Language Vocabulary Acquisition: A Rationale for Pedagogy edited by James Coady, Thomas Huckin, University of Cambridge, UK


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