Colorful Vocabulary

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Colorful Vocabulary

Ruth Greene9-12 Grades

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Many of my students have difficulty understanding the vocabulary in works such as Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter, or Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. After playing the vocabulary-based game Balderdash, I decided to adapt it for use in my classroom. I designed colorful boards using Astrobright colors and added a few flourishes of my own! The game pieces are colorful erasers. To make the game cards, students find words they do not know in the texts we are reading. On one side of a colorful card, students write the words they do not know, and on the other, they write out the sentence with the word in it, plus the real definition. To play the game, students shuffle the cards and make up hilarious definitions for the words according to the Balderdash game instructions. The students are attracted to the bright colors I used to make the game boards and I get 100% participation in learning difficult vocabulary words.

Many of my students have difficulty understanding the vocabulary in works such as Nathaniel Hawthorne’s The Scarlet Letter, or Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet. After playing the vocabulary-based game Balderdash, I decided to adapt it for use in my classroom. I designed colorful boards using Astrobright colors and added a few flourishes of my own! The game pieces are colorful erasers. To make the game cards, students find words they do not know in the texts we are reading. On one side of a colorful card, students write the words they do not know, and on the other, they write out the sentence with the word in it, plus the real definition. To play the game, students shuffle the cards and make up hilarious definitions for the words according to the Balderdash game instructions. The students are attracted to the bright colors I used to make the game boards and I get 100% participation in learning difficult vocabulary words.