Academic vocabulary is one of the strongest indicators of how well students will learn subject area content. Unfortunately, vocabulary development can be an after thought in content area classrooms. Educators and experts discuss strategies for helping students acquire academic vocabulary in every classroom.
Complex texts. Rigor. Higher standards. Every year, the stakes are raised in the content area classrooms. Nancy Guth, supervisor of literacy and humanities in Stafford County Public Schools, says, "We need the tools to meet this challenge."
Vicki Urquhart, author of the ASCD book Teaching Reading in the Content Areas, 3rd Ed., says she hears from professors that students come to college unprepared to participate in a high level of discourse. "They don't have the vocabulary, they don't know how to process or discuss what they've read," says Urquhart.