Vocabulary Strategies For Increase Language Acquisition Among Esl Students

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Vocabulary Strategies to Increase Language Acquisition Among ESL students

Reading is the process of decoding words and the ability to understand words accurately. It is an essential part of early literacy development and enhances learning across the curriculum, from Pre-K through adulthood (Mangen & Velay, 2011). An ELL is a student who is served in a program of language assistance such as an English as a Second Language Program (ESL; U.S. Department of Education, 2014). ELL identification varies by state and generally includes students whose home language is not English and who demonstrate limited English language skills and a need for special support in English language development (Solari et al., 2012). A large issue
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Vocabulary is defined as the knowledge of words and word meanings. Steven Stahl (2005) states "Vocabulary knowledge is knowledge; the knowledge of a word not only implies a definition, but also implies how that word fits into the world." Students cannot understand what they read without understanding what most of the words mean. Decades of research have confirmed the important role that vocabulary plays in reading comprehension and in students’ overall academic success (Hiebert & Kamil, 2005). Students need multiple exposures to words in multiple contexts before they understand, remember, and apply them (Nagy, 2005).
According to Marzano (2004), background knowledge is acquired through the interaction of two factors: the ability of the student to process and store information and the regularity with which a student has academically oriented experiences. In 1985, Beck and McKeown suggested that every literate person has a vocabulary consisting of three levels (Beck & McKeown, & Kucan, 2008). Those levels are divided into 3 tiers. Tier 1 words are simple words that do not require direct instruction. They include sight words and high frequency words which include nouns, verbs, adjectives that are learned early on. Some examples of Tier 1 words are: book, number, animal, clock, girl, addition, cat, and red. There are about 8,000 word families in English included in Tier 1. Tier 2 contains high-frequency words that occur across a variety of
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