To help my kids expand their vocabularies, I've chose a "word of the day" for several years now. They get it printed on a piece of paper at breakfast, along with the part of speech (noun, verb, etc.). Then at dinner, they each try to use the word during our family discussion. I keep track of how many times the word is used and by whom, and list the results on a poster.
We're all amazed at how much their vocabularies have grown (and can see the number of new words they learned each month). It's exciting to be able to explain yourself so precisely because of all the words we have in the English language! Once you use a word 5-10 times, it pretty much stays in your mind.
Source: My own idea when I heard kids using words that didn't describe what they really meant!
By Casey from Plano, TX
Excellent tip! I'm a word-lover myself, so really loved this tip.
Casey, this is a great tip. I'm a believer in teaching your children to be well spoken. I think it's never too early. Our children have always had what others describe as advanced vocabularies. We really haven't done anything special other then speak to them as we speak to anyone else (no baby talk) and explain the meaning of words, correct words used out of context.
I love to see someone else preparing their children. It seems we have too many kids out there that aren't prepared for the real world.
Great tip. My sons are all grown up now, but I agree with the first commenter that you should use correct wording with young children. My middle son was precocious and picked up very large words.
Also reading to the child is very important. Read to them even after they can read simple books to themselves. Read above their level, books with topics that interest them but have good vocabulary and explain any they don't understand or know.
Wonderful idea! For other vocab fun for the adults you might want to look into "freerice.com". You challenge yourself in vocabulary and other areas and for doing this online you are able to be instrumental in donating rice to a hungry nation. It's pretty neat! Your idea is great and will foster a wonderful learning "team" with your children. Good for you!
As a mom and especially as a teacher "I love it". If you have a basement or a place with a blank wall you can make a "word wall". Write all the words on index cards and make a word collage. This way they'll be amazed at all the new words they have incorporated into their vocabulary, and it would be great when doing homework and you're looking for that perfect word!
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