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August 02 , 2008

Fifty Ways to Teach Vocabulary: Tips for ESL/EFL Teachers


Without grammar, you can't say much; but without vocabulary, you can't say anything.

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Vocabulary is the foundation of successful language learning. ESL/EFL learners need to be familiar with a great many words if they want to read, write, listen, or speak with ease. In addition to the sheer number of words and phrases students need to learn, what makes vocabulary acquisition so tricky is that one “pass” is never enough. In order to really “know” a word, learners need to know, among other things, how to spell it, how to pronounce it, what other words it collocates with, what prefixes and suffixes it takes, what grammatical patterns it fits with, and what positive or negative associations it may have.

Research shows that students learn the most easily when they are interested and having fun. Games and activities that engage students, whether they are adults or children, will help them create stronger memories and store these memories for longer.

This book is divided into three sections:

1. Introducing new vocabulary
2. Reviewing and remembering vocabulary
3. Assessment opportunities

and provides 50 ideas (plus one bonus tip!) for helping your students learn and remember vocabulary. Photos and downloadable worksheets are included.

The "Fifty Ways to Teach" series gives you a variety of drills, games, techniques, methods, and ideas to help your students master English. Most of the ideas can be used for both beginning and advanced classes. Many require little to no preparation or special materials. The ideas can be used with any textbook, or without a textbook at all. These short, practical guides aim to make your teaching life easier, and your students' lives more rewarding and successful.

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