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Vocabulary and Technology Integration Series – Post #3

Technology Blog

Technology Integration and Vocabulary Instruction

Part 3


This is the final installment in the three part series on technology integration and vocabulary instruction.

Part One highlighted the necessity of and some of the research around high quality vocabulary instruction and demonstrated an example of a digital word wall.

Part Two described some of the ways teachers can use audio and video tools to supplement a system of teaching vocabulary.



The focus in Part Three shifts to putting the technology in the hands of students so they can create their own digital resources for better understanding and remembering vocabulary.


Students Use Blogs to Build and Demonstrate Knowledge

Blogging with students is a fun, authentic way for them to develop writing skills, practice digital citizenship, and give them an opportunity to both build academic knowledge and demonstrate what they have learned.

One of the most creative uses of blogging I have come across is the Reading Round-Up created by Mrs. Yollis and Mr. Salsich several years ago. They used the blog, in addition to their awesome classroom blogs, as an entertaining way to teach reading skills by giving it an old western theme and referring to the students as “buckaroos.”

Click here to read their post “Circling Up Synonyms” about how they had students looking for and blogging about synonyms in their reading.


Students Create Vocabulary Supports Through Video

Looking for a way to meaningfully integrate technology into her science class, as well boost student grasp of important vocabulary, Lynnelle Larson at Shuksan Middle School taught her students to create video slideshows that incorporated the terms they were learning as part of an Ecosystems units.

Here are a couple of examples of those videos:

The New York Times Learning Network Vocabulary Video Contest

Are your students motivated by contests? The New York Times Learning Network held a vocabulary video contest called Words Gone Wild! Entries could be no longer than 15 seconds long and must be about one of the Learning Network’s previously published Words of the Day.

Here is one of the winning entries:


If this sounds like something you and your students are interested in, the next contest opens in January. To get the details on this and more of The Learning Network’s Student Contests, check this out.


Use a Wiki to Host Your Class Vocabulary Collection

Wikis are online content creation sites. An idea would be to assign students words to add to the wiki. They can also add images, videos, audio recordings, and other resources to help create an understanding of the terms. If you allow discussions on your wiki, students could also give each other feedback or share different sentences using the words in context.

The resources shared in this series of posts just begin to scrape the surface of what is possible when incorporating technology into your vocabulary instruction. From digital word walls, to teacher created movies, to student made wiki sites and eBooks, you have so much to choose from when thinking about you can support and engage all of your students to improve their vocabulary. One of the reasons why integrating technology in this process is important is that it gives students access to the content outside of the specific time you taught it. If students missed or do not remember your direct instruction, they and their families have a way finding and interacting with the content again and again.


As always, if you would like support implementing any of these suggestions, or if you would like to discuss anything you read here in more detail, please do not hesitate to contact me.

If you or your students create digital vocabulary resources, you would be willing to share here, please comment on the blog post and leave a link for us to see what you made!

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