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Weekly Tool Tip


 The Meaning of Words

 Purpose: To get students to appreciate the importance of asking what words mean if they do not understand. {Note: This would be a great lesson for us adults to learn as well.}

  • Step 1: Explain to the students that around the world there are thousands of different languages.
  • Step 2: Further explain that even in the English/American language each culture can have its own special way of speaking.
  • Step 3: Read the following list and ask students to explain what they think it means:
    • Apples and pears means:
    • Jam jar means:
    • Gregory Peck means:
    • Strawberry tart means:
  • Step 5: Notice that students will have no idea what you’re talking about. Then explain that this is called Cockney rhyming slang. Cockney being somebody who was born within the sound of Bow Bells in England.
  • Step 6: Ask students to identify how this language is created.
  • Step 7: Review student answers and explain that each of these expressions rhymes to create the meaning of another word. For example: Apples and pears means stairs. Jam jar means car. Gregory Peck means neck. Strawberry tart means heart.
  • Step 8: Get students to create their own rhyming language.

 NOTE: Helping students to appreciate that if they don’t understand something it may be because we as teachers have not used language correctly can build their own self confidence. It can also be a wonderful way to keep us on track.

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