Wednesday, June 19, 2013

L2 tactics on L1 vocabulary learning

Since one of the projects in the vocabulary acquisition class is to learn 100 new English words, I figured I could take a page out of L2 teaching. There are some ways of teaching that include pre-reading vocabulary instruction. Why not do the same for L1? Sure, I've got an adult-sized vocabulary, but why make this harder than necessary?

But where to find the words I don't know? Enter the Simple Concordance Program teamed up with Jekyll and Hyde. One of the SCP's tricks is that it can generate a word list by frequency of the word's use. And Jekyll and Hyde is in the public domain, so its text is already txt. So team them up to make a list showing from least frequent (one use for a whole bunch) to most frequent (1,600 uses for the). Scan the words that occur once for likely targets, and you've now got a list of words to learn. 

Just. Like. That.

(I should add that this doesn't add to vocabulary depth or catch all of the likely targets, but it speeds things up quite a bit.)