Academic vocabulary consists of words that are not commonly used or frequently encountered in everyday conversation. These words include specialized content vocabulary for specific subjects such as reading/language art, science, social studies, or math. Academic vocabulary also includes terms found on standardized tests. When students understand testing vocabulary, test scores go up. By teaching test vocabulary and how the words look in different forms on a test, students feel better prepared and more confident on test day.
When to Teach Words
When preparing units of study such as novel studies, add four to five academic vocabulary words in with the novel specific words. Select words based on the skills taught during the unit of study.