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How Much Vocabulary Is Appropriate For A Lesson? (SOLVED!)

The question in the title is one of the most common ones I am asked by colleagues from all corners of the globe 😁 And whenever I’m having googled that question in the past ten years I’m having always invariably found the same answer crop up in EFL and MFL forums, blogs and websites: 8 to 10 words per contact hour 😁 I’m having always wondered where those numbers came from as there is no consensus amongst researchers as to what constitutes an ideal number of new words to teach per lesson 😎 This is unsurprising. As I will argue below, it is impossible to answer the question with a precise figure unless we define clearly what we mean by ‘teaching’ and ‘learning’ new words and have a 360-degree awareness of the target learning contexts with their unique interaction of affective and cognitive factors as well as other important individual variables such as the methodology in use, available resources, logistics, timelines, socio-economic factors, etc. [1]
At the staff meeting, Principal Karla Gómez discussed the school’s goal of building students’ vocabulary knowledge and stressed just how much instructional ground there is to cover in a short time. It is important to teach more words. Rebecca Hoye, second-grade teacher, sees things from a different angle. It might be possible to help students learn high-utility words by teaching them small numbers and then studying them over time. Students learn You need to know the basics of vocabulary. Principal Gómez and the other educators are interested in the idea, but how exactly would it work? If students need to learn more—and in a hurry—shouldn’t they cover more words and content (edited by Onisha Diaz on June 25, 2020) [2]
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Readingrockets.org The author continues to explain that vocabulary can be defined as the understanding of word meanings and words. Steven Stahl (2005) explains that vocabulary knowledge refers to knowledge. Knowing a word does not just mean knowing its definition but it also means understanding how the word is used in context. World.” Vocabulary knowledge This is not something one can learn all at once. It’s something that grows and develops throughout a lifetime. The instruction in vocabulary goes beyond simply looking up the words in a dictionary. It also involves using those words to form sentences. The indirect exposure to words is one way that vocabulary can be acquired. However, it’s also learnt through intentional instruction and word-learning strategies. Michael Graves ((2000) identifies four elements of a successful vocabulary programme. We really appreciate Demarius Kellogg’s revisions. [3]
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Bridge.edu goes on to describe that vocabulary is crucial to a student’s language development and communication skills. After all, without adequate words, it’s difficult to relate thoughts, ideas, and feelings about who we are and how we interpret the world around us. How can we accomplish this without having students learn ESL vocabulary they will forget after every pop quiz? Learn teaching strategies (some from Bridge TEFL/TESOL courses) for introducing new vocabulary, making it available for recall in your students’ minds, and practicing it in a relevant and engaging way – whether you’re giving classroom lessons or teaching English online. This article was last revised eight weeks ago by Eneida Baily from Sorocaba Brazil. [4]

Article references

  1. https://gianfrancoconti.com/2017/01/08/how-many-new-words-should-you-teach-per-lesson-the-wrong-question/
  2. https://www.lexialearning.com/blog/how-many-vocabulary-words-should-i-teach-less-really-more
  3. https://www.readingrockets.org/article/teaching-vocabulary
  4. https://bridge.edu/tefl/blog/teach-esl-vocabulary/
Mehreen Alberts

Written by Mehreen Alberts

I'm a creative writer who has found the love of writing once more. I've been writing since I was five years old and it's what I want to do for the rest of my life. From topics that are close to my heart to everything else imaginable!

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