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Dr. Joanne Meier
Along with her background as a professor, researcher, writer, and teacher, Joanne Meier is a mom. Join Joanne every week as she shares her experiences raising her own young readers, and guides parents and teachers on the best practices in reading.
Misconceptions about vocabulary learning
One way to help a child do well in school (and life!) is to help them build their vocabulary. Beginning readers use knowledge about words to help them make sense of what they're reading. The more words a reader knows, the more they are able to comprehend what they're reading or listening to. There's an important link between vocabulary and comprehension.
Educational Leadership's June volume includes a solid article called Vocabulary: Five Common Misconceptions, written by scholars in the field, including Nancy Padak, Karen Bromley, Tim Rasinski and Evangeline Newton. The article is available online for free. I encourage you to read the full article!
If you can't stand the anticipation of wondering what the misconceptions are, I'll just say that the top two make a lot of sense — thinking that definitions do the trick, and thinking that weekly vocabulary lists are effective. But I encourage you to read the article for all five and for more context about each one. You'll also find suggested online resources for vocabulary learning.