What works: Play and vocabulary
Peterson, Dr. S.S. (2016, Feb.). Supporting student’s vocabulary development through play. What works? Research into Practice, #62.
From page 1: “Play provides an ideal context for children’s vocabulary development. As children engage with objects, they talk to themselves and to others, developing and refining their understanding of what the objects are, how they can be used, and how they relate to other familiar concepts.1 In this way, they construct meanings of words in their talk during play activities. Children can try out the words and, by observing how others respond, either confirm or revise their understandings of the words’ meanings.2 They also encounter new vocabulary and ways of using it when engaged in play activities with others. In the process, children create more nuanced understandings of the vocabulary and become more confident in using those words in multiple contexts.3”
Page 2 includes a section on the teacher’s role in supporting vocabulary development (eg using new vocabulary; making prior connections) and pages 2-4 includes ideas for supporting oral language (eg new words through literature; problem-solving situations; drama).
Check it out!