Semantic Map

Precipitation
Rain
Snow
Sleet
Hail
Fog
Storms
Thunderstorm
Tornado
Hurricane
Tsunami
Instruments
Barometer
Thermometer
Rain gauge
Anemometer
Global
World-wide
Meteorology
Weather forecasting
Earth Sciences
Patterns
Fronts
High pressure
Low pressure

 

1. Relate to semantic (meaning) and phonological (sound) information.

Semantic

WORDCATEGORYFUNCTIONASSOCIATIONSSIMILARITIES
BootsClothesProtects feetRain
Puddles
Umbrella
Wellies
Shoes
trainers
CustardFoodEating, tasteYellow
Pudding
Tin
Sauce
Milk

Phonological

SYLLABLESRHYMEFIRST SOUNDLAST SOUND
Boots = 1Fruits
Shoots
bs
Cus-tard = 2Mustardc (‘k’)d

 

2. Semantic Feature Analysis:  draws on pupils’ prior knowledge and uses discussion to elicit information about word meanings. Uses a grid; left side contains names of members of the category to which the target concept belongs, and the top of the grid contains names of features of members of the category. Note: more items can be added to either left or top of the grid as they arise through discussion. Discuss whether each item is a member of each concept, marking + for positive examples, and - for negative examples. See example below for the topic on ‘transportation’.

 Two wheeledOne wheeledFour wheeledFoot poweredMotor poweredOn landOn waterIn the air
Bicycle+--+-+--
Car--+-++--
Unicycle-+-+-+--
Aeroplane----+--+
Boat----+-+-

 

3. Teaching of word parts:  teaching pupils to recognise and use information from word parts such as prefixes, and suffixes can be a very effective strategy in helping them to determine the meaning of unknown words. For this strategy to be most successful, it is important to teach pupils to combine word-part information with information gained from the context

a. Prefixes: the following nine prefixes account for 75% of all prefixed words that appear in printed text.

RankPrefix% of all prefixed words
1un-26
2re-14
3in-, im-, il-, ir-11
4dis-7
5en-, em-4
6non-4
7in-, im-3
8over-3
9mis-3

 

b. Suffixes: the following seven suffixes account for 82% of all suffixed words that appear in printed text.

RankSuffix% of all suffixed words
1-s, -es31
2-ed20
3-ing14
4-ly7
5-er, -or4
6-ion, -tion, -ation, -ition4
7-able, -ible2

 

To teach pupils effectively, a simple definition should be provided, followed by a discussion to generate examples of words containing the target prefix/suffix. For example, for the prefix ‘un-‘, a simple definition of ‘not’, followed by examples, such as unknown, undone, unimaginable, etc.

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Last updated: 22 October 2015

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