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Developing High-Level Vocabulary. Through Fine Art Images, Photos, and Illustrations By Barbara Place. For More Information.

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Developing High-Level Vocabulary

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Developing high level vocabulary

Developing High-Level Vocabulary

Through Fine Art Images, Photos, and Illustrations

By Barbara Place

For more information

For More Information

  • Please contact Barbara Place at if you would like any further information. This website can not hold my complete PowerPoint with all of the fine art images and images of real-world photos, but I’d be happy to send the PowerPoint to any people who are interested in my complete presentation.



  • Key Research Findings

  • High-level Vocabulary

  • Why Images Are So Powerful

  • Practical Tips and Strategies

  • Research Findings on Method

Key research findings

Key Research Findings

  • Vocabulary is the single biggest predictor of comprehension.

  • Oral language experiences are the most powerful way to develop vocabulary.

Vocabulary differences by age 3

Vocabulary Differences by age 3

  • Higher SES: 30 million words/1,100 words

  • Working class homes: 20 million words/700 words

  • Lower SES: 10 million words/500 words

Key cognitive research findings

Key Cognitive Research Findings

  • Rare, sophisticated words

  • Decontextualized Talk

High level vocabulary

High-Level Vocabulary

  • Beyond High-Frequency Words

  • Academic Vocabulary

  • Tier 2 Vocabulary

  • Robust or Sophisticated Vocabulary

  • Rare Words

Types of vocabulary words

Types of Vocabulary Words

  • Tier 1

  • Tier 2

  • Tier 3

Why images are so powerful

Why images are so powerful?

  • Low threshold for student entry

  • Neurological support for remembering vocabulary

  • Allows primary grade students to expand vocabulary

  • Provides practice with using “evidence” to support opinions

The power of images

The Power of Images

  • Our brains associate information with our five senses

  • Our brains are designed to catch visual information quickly

Practical tips and strategies

Practical Tips and Strategies

  • Routine

  • Selecting Vocabulary

  • Connecting Vocabulary to Images

  • Involving All Students

  • Reviewing Previously Learned Vocabulary



  • Open-ended Discussion

  • Introduction of vocabulary in context sentences

  • Repetition of new vocabulary

  • Repetition of previously learned vocabulary

  • Quick review of target vocabulary

Selecting vocabulary

Selecting Vocabulary

  • Generative Words (prefixes, suffixes, and root words)

  • Instructional Potential (interact, elaborate, colossal, congested, inhabitant, masterpiece)

  • Conceptual Understanding (impenetrable, innovate, nostaligia)

Connecting vocabulary to images

Connecting Vocabulary to Images

  • Memorable Words

  • Images that expand students’ prior knowledge


Involving all students

Involving All Students

  • Introduce words in a context sentence

  • Have all students repeat the word or sentence

  • Thumbs up or thumbs down questions

  • Yes or no questions

  • Either-or questions

  • Provide open-ended questions about the images

Reviewing vocabulary

Reviewing Vocabulary

  • Keep a list of vocabulary

  • Include natural opportunities for students to use the word.

  • Provide sentence frames

Additional gains

Additional Gains

  • Student Engagement

  • Student Confidence

Research findings

Research Findings

  • Retention of target vocabulary

  • Improved comprehension

  • Improved ability to use context clues

  • Improved overall vocabulary

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