Education Essay Example: Selection of Vocabulary

Published: 2020-06-10
Education Essay Example: Selection of Vocabulary
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Teaching Learning Languages
Pages: 3
Wordcount: 643 words
6 min read

Selection of vocabulary is an important step in promoting learning for the learners. The selection of the vocabulary is a long process that one has to consider many facts such as the age of the learners and the setting of the society. When using songs to entice the learners to learn their music it is important to consider various facts that determine the ease by which the learners understand the vocabularies. The nature of vocabularies determines the songs that can be used in teaching these elements. When selecting the vocabularies to use, the teacher should ensure that these vocabularies can occur in contexts that are easy for the learners to associate.

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The teacher should consider the size and depth of the vocabularies to determine whether they are fit for children of a particular age. The size of the vocabularies refers to the number of meanings a word has. For instance, some word can have more than one meaning leading to confusion for the learner. The ability of the vocabulary to portray certain meaning and be relevant in many contexts is a factor to consider when working with vocabularies. The depth of the vocabulary refers to the usability of the vocabulary (Thornbury, 2002). When selecting the vocabularies to teach the children one as to consider their ability to use the vocabularies in their day-to-day activities. Although some vocabularies are easy to learn, they are difficult to use and therefore lose their vitality and their usability in the childs life. For instance, some abstract ideologies might be too difficult for children to understand and comprehend. When choosing the correct songs use in such classes, it is important for the teacher to use songs that have concrete words that have tangible material. For instance, a song that gives examples of hands, mountains and such things. Songs that express feelings and ideologies might be less useful in helping the young learners understand the new language.

Another important factor to consider is the receptiveness and productivity of the word. Receptive vocabularies are the vocabularies that one can easily read or hear and draw its meaning in a conversation or text. These are words that one can understand the meaning by associating the word with the context in which they occur. Productive words on the other hand are vocabularies that one has to recall before using it in a conversation or understanding its meaning. The productivity of the vocabulary determines its use. When a learner learns a vocabulary it can either become receptive or productive (Madden, 1987). When a vocabulary is receptive, the learner cannot easily recall it but understands it when used in a context. When choosing the vocabulary to teach to children one as to consider the nature of the word. Is it a word that the learner can understand but not use or is it a word the learner can use? It is good to choose music with productive words that can help the learner gain the ability to use the word in different contexts. Although receptive words are important in helping the learner understand different conversations.

The choice of words when teaching vocabulary is an important step in equipping the learner with the ability to use a certain language. One needs to consider several factors when determining the vocabularies to teach. Some of these factors include; the frequency in which the vocabulary occurs, the contexts in which the vocabulary appears the collocation of the word, the grammatical patterns of the vocabulary and the strategic use of the vocabulary (Crossley, 2002).


Crossley, S. A., & McNamara, D. S. (2009). Computational assessment of lexical differences in L1 and L2 writing. Journal of Second Language Writing. doi:10.1016/j.jslw.2009.02.002

Madden, C. G. (1987). WORKING WITH WORDS: A GUIDE TO TEACHING AND LEARNING VOCABULARY. Ruth Gairns and Stuart Redman. Studies in Second Language Acquisition. doi:10.1017/S0272263100000528

Thornbury, S. (2002). How to teach vocabulary. Harlow: Longman.

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