Students need opportunities to make connections to new vocabulary words and to use the words in authentic situations. They can make connections to themselves, to the language, or to prior knowledge. Asking students to make connections allows them to access their own background knowledge. Plus, it makes the learning more personal, so students will be more likely to remember.
Procedure:
1. Pass out paper or index cards and ask students to choose any one of the new vocabulary words.
2. On the cards, they write a way in which they connect to the word they chose. They can draw a picture, write a word in their language, write a word or sentence in English that the new word makes them think of, etc. For example, if the word is ghost, a student might write: When I was little, I was scared of ghosts.
3. When they have finished, form groups according to the words they chose. Call out a word, and the students with that word share their connections with the class. Allow students from other groups to spontaneously add connections they think of.
4. You may also use the cards to create and display Word Walls.

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