Words unlock the doors to a world of understanding.
Vocabulary is one of the most important aspects of a modern curriculum. At Rainford High, we believe that explicit and engaging vocabulary teaching has the power to promote independence in learners, ignite imaginations and improve attainment.
Research suggests that the typical vocabulary size of a successful pupil leaving secondary school today is 50,000 words. At Rainford High, your child will be encouraged to expand their vocabulary knowledge through explicit vocabulary teaching in lessons across the curriculum. They will be guided to explore the etymology and morphology of words to deeper understand them. Over 90% of the vocabulary of academic texts in school has Latin and Greek origins, therefore teaching etymology has positive implications for learning and cracking the academic code.
Each week, students will also be introduced to a new ‘Word of the Week’ which they will be asked to try and use in their written and verbal work during lessons and around the school.
Every time they use this word, students will be rewarded with a ‘Word of the Week’ merit. There will also be half-termly prizes for using the ‘Word of the Week’ to further encourage its use amongst students.
What can I do at home to support my child’s vocabulary development and help them to reach that magic 50,000 words?
- Talk to your child about the ‘Word of the Week’. Can they use the word in a sentence? Can they explain the etymology and morphology of the word to you or give you a definition?
- Encourage your child to read for pleasure. Through reading, your child will be exposed to a wealth of vocabulary. Reading helps to learn new words from the context in which they are used, thereby making it easy to remember the new words and more importantly, how and when they are used.
- Check that your child has downloaded and is using the ‘PiXL Unlock’ vocabulary app. This is free to download and seeks to aid students’ academic achievement by taking them on a journey through each word they encounter to teach, consolidate and continuously develop their vocabulary knowledge and range.
- Encourage your child to experiment with new vocabulary in their conversations with you. There are some fantastic apps that you and your child can access for free which give a ‘Word of the Day’. Please see the links below for some suggestions. Why not download one and start a family competition to see who can use the word the most?!
- PiXL Unlock
- Free Rice – a free vocabulary game from the charity ‘The World Food Programme’. For each correct answer, the equivalent of 10 grains of rice is donated to the WFP who use it to save and change lives in more than 80 countries around the world, feeding people caught in conflict and disasters, and laying the foundations for a better future.