Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Concept Attainment/Development

Concept Development Map

A concept map is a special form of a web diagram from exploring knowledge, and gathering and sharing information. A concept map consists of nodes or cells that contain a concept, item or questions and links. The labeled links explain the relationship between the cells. The arrow describes the direction of the relationship and reads like a sentence.

( http://olc.spsd.sk.ca/DE/PD/instr/strats/conceptmap/index.html)

Concept development maps may also include a definition of the concept, examples, and non-examples to help students explore into the content deeper. 

~CD Map designed by Miss Koch

Foldables and Flip Charts

Foldables and Flip Charts offer a hands-on way for students to organize information. This strategy involves folding paper in a multitude of ways. With one type of foldable, a sheet of paper is held in a landscape orientation and then folded in half lengthwise. The front half is then cut into a number or flaps, with the cut doing up to the fold. On the outside front, a key word may be placed on each flap. When each is lifted, a definition may be written on the top half and a picture may be on the bottom half. 

(Making Content Comprehensible for English Language Learners- The SIOP Model, page 178)

Chunk and Chew

Teachers pause after every ten minutes of input to give students time to talk with a partner or in a small group about what they have just learned. This is a strategy used to help maintain the new information. 

(Making Content Comprehensible for English Language Learners- The SIOP Model, page 199)


Organize the class into one to four groups. Each group will need a pen/paper or white board/marker for drawing their clues. Students take turns collecting words form the teacher. They return to their group and draw picture clues. The person doing the drawing is not allowed to speak. When someone in the group gets the correct answer, the next person goes to the teacher for the next word. Groups must work quietly so they are not overheard by other groups. 

Give out words to groups one by one, in the same order for all groups. Whisper (or show on a card) the new word to the student. The first group to get to the end of your word list wins. Use these words to start a vocabulary chart, which you can build throughout the unit. 

Podcasts and TV Show

Students prepare two to three minute oral summary on the topic of the concept chosen. Students rehearse a skit over the content and then record their skit on a podcast, audio file, or class computer. Small grops plan a talk show on a topic with multiple parameters that they have studied. One student is the host and interviewer; others are the guests. 

(Making Content Comprehensible for English Language Learners- The SIOP Model, page 199)

Mind Mapping

Mind mapping is a strategy for helping students order and structure their thinking through mentally mapping words and/or concepts. Mind maps were developed by Tony Buzan as a way of  helping students make notes that used only key words and images. They are much quicker to make and because of their visual quality much easier to remember and review. The difference between concept maps and mind maps is that a mind map has only one main concept, while a concept map could have several. 

Vocabulary Journal

Rothenberg and Fisher (2007.158) suggest a Vocabulary Journal for particular subject areas. One section of the journal might focus on multiple meaning words. Vocabulary Journals provide students with the opportunity to review words and time they wish. 

In my classroom, I have an academic vocabulary notebook that we constantly update with academic language. It is helpful to write the word, write a sentence with the word, a connection and a picture to relate back to the word. Students also have a "math playbook" that they update daily with math content, math vocabulary and examples. 

Memory/Match Up

Students can play this game and use this strategy to develop concepts. Students play by having content cards face down on a table or floor in an array. The cards could be words and their definitions or definitions and examples. The possibilites are endless with the match-ups you could make. Students take turns choosing cards from the array choosing two at a time. If the cards match, the student gets to keep the cards, but if they do not match, the cards must be replaced to the original spot in the array. The student with the most cards, wins the memory/match-up game. 

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