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Tutor Tip of the Month

Building Our Vocabularies

Expanding the number of words a learner comprehends, spells and utilizes is a common learner goal. Focusing on areas of vocabulary that your learner commonly uses and encounters is a natural place to start.

Once the basic words for a topic area have become part of your learners’ vocabulary, you can enrich and deepen his or her personal lexicon by introducing synonyms. This is particularly useful because even those with larger vocabularies have a tendency to repeat the same words over and over again. “Nice” and “interesting,” for example, can accurately describe a wide variety of situations. What an impression it can make and how much more descriptive it can be, to have access to more words, such as “thought-provoking,” “inspiring,” “pleasant,” “lovely,” and “stimulating.”

You can also make things fun by making a game of regularly sharing with each other a new word that you heard or read since your last tutoring session. It could be the most unusual word, a newly invented word, or a word that arrested your attention. You can look up the words in the dictionary together, and discuss similar words, clues in the word or its context to help with the meaning, etc. This is a nice way to learn together and enjoy the playful nature of the English language.

Enjoy The Holidays! 


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