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Jointly offered by the SABES PD Center for ELA and ESOL, this professional development offering will cover theories of how vocabulary contributes to reading comprehension, what research tells us about the vocabulary needs of ABE and ESOL learners, how to assess vocabulary (including hands-on activities with several vocabulary tests), instructional approaches that support the CCR Standards for ELA, and free online resources to support that instruction.


This professional development activity/course is designed for:

  • Teachers and volunteer tutors working with ABE and ASE learners and upper-level ESOL learners.

In this jam-packed session, you will:

--> Review: 
       • How vocabulary fits into the CCR Standards for ELA
       • Theories of vocabulary acquisition
       • Types of vocabulary
       • The research on the vocabulary needs of ABE, ASE, and upper-level ESOL learners.

--> Administer and interpret an expressive vocabulary test
--> Examine and review a receptive vocabulary assessment
--> Cover Evidence-Based Reading Instruction (ERBI) approaches to vocabulary instruction to improve comprehension, including Tier 2 Words and Signal Words
--> Explore free on-line resources to support vocabulary teaching
As part of this professional development offering, you will submit 2-part homework to Dr. Strucker via e-mail and receive written feedback.

  1. Administer the expressive vocabulary test to an adult learner, and write an interpretation of the results
  2. Teach a trial lesson (with templates provided by the workshop leader) on Tier 2 words or signal words and write-up the results

Snow date is March 31, 2017.

Learning Objectives: 

Upon completion of this professional development activity/course, you will be able to:

  • Explain how vocabulary connects to the CCR Standards for ELA
  • Explain key aspects of vocabulary theory, including how vocabulary supports comprehension, word tiers, and receptive vs. expressive language
  • Administer and interpret an expressive vocabulary test and be familiar with a well-known receptive vocabulary test
  • Locate online resources to support vocabulary instruction
  • Put what you have learned into practice by teaching both a Tier 2 lesson and a signal words vocabulary lesson, ultimately leading toward increased student outcomes
03/10/2017 - 9:30am to 3:30pm
5 Western Ave.
Cambridge, MA 02139
PD Center: 
Topic Area: 
ABE/Adult Education
College and Career Readiness
ESOL/English Language Learner
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