Teaching a new word to your child can seem difficult, but it doesn’t have to be. Here are 10 tips to help:

  1. Try not to overdo it.Don’t expect your child to learn 10 new words a day. One or two a day is more than enough and it will be more likely to stick.
  2. Say it a lot. Use that new word in your conversations with your child and with others, so he or she can see how it can be used and understood better.
  3. Don’t restrict words. Don’t feel like because your child may not understand a word, you shouldn’t use it. Quite the opposite. Use the new vocabulary word and help them see.
  4. Visualize the words. Show your child concrete examples for the words. Look up pictures for nouns. Pantomime out verbs. Find something that matches the adjective.
  5. See it. Say it. Write it. Your child only fully knows a word when he or she can recognize the word, say it, and write it. So have them practice.
  6. Read with your child. The easiest way to learn new words is to read with your child. They can hear you pronounce the words and see the word on the page.
  7. Use context clues. Don’t just automatically tell a child what a word means. Help them use the context of the word to figure it out.
  8. Show them you are learning too. Even as an adult, there are words that you don’t know. Point them out when you come across them and show your child how you figured out what the word means.
  9. New words are everywhere. Reading may be the easiest way to learn new words, but you can learn anywhere. Take your child to museums, zoos, even grocery stores and the bank.
  10. Remember words with multiple meanings. The English language is full of homonyms. “Blue” could be the color, but also mean someone is feeling down. (Down is another example).

Since 2002, the professional tutors at Learning Ascent in St Charles, IL have provided tutoring and ACT prep, helping thousands of students from Batavia, IL; Geneva, IL; South Elgin, IL; and other Fox Valley towns to improve their academic performance. Click here for Homework Help resources.

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