Saturday, March 1, 2014

Knowing Your Greek and Latin Roots Helps Your Vocabulary Grow

Last week, I had a plan. In an attempt to hasten the arrival of spring, I decided to decorate the bulletin board in the hallway outside my classroom with flowers. If you've seen Monday's forecast for Philadelphia, you know my plan failed miserably. With predictions of up to another foot of snow for us, it looks like winter will be hanging around for at least a little longer.

Even though my bulletin board design didn't shift the weather patterns around here, it did turn out very nicely. I wanted to share it with other middle grades teachers who are teaching Greek and Latin roots to their students. The bulletin board display is based on the theme that "Knowing your Greek and Latin Roots will Help your Vocabulary Grow".

Each student made a construction paper flower with a circular center and five petals. (I had a parent volunteer precut the pieces to save time.) In the center of the flower, the students wrote a Greek or Latin root with its meaning. The student, then, chose five derivatives for their root to write on the petals of the flower. Each root was written on a separate petal along with a child-friendly definition of the word that related back to the root.

We used the roots we've been learning using Vocabulary Packets: Greek & Latin Roots from Scholastic. If you are looking for a well-organized resource to teach Greek and Latin roots, read more about the book HERE.

My students completed this project in one class period and did a fantastic job, if I do say so myself. As disappointed as I am that the power of suggestion was not strong enough to stave off another assault by Old Man Winter, I do think this bulletin board display is brightening things up outside Room 202. Who knows when real flowers will finally bloom this year? In the meantime, you can enjoy these paper beauties knowing that you've helped your students increase their vocabulary.

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