Teaching Dictionary Skills
Do your kids know how to use a dictionary? In this day and age of being able to hop on a phone or tablet to find out any information you need to know, is it still important to know how to open up a dictionary and learn something?
As an English teacher, I can wholeheartedly state that it is not only important, but vital, to know how to find information in a book–in this case, the dictionary.
Dictionary skills carry over to using other reference materials and learning organizational skills such as alphabetical order. Using the dictionary to find words often leads to another word, and simply browsing through can reveal new words, thus increasing your vocabulary.
If you already know how to use a dictionary, it might seem like a no-brainer. However, it can be a real challenge for some students to understand how to find information this way. Alphabetical order is not an easy concept for some students, as well. The solution is to start of with the basics and slowly acclimate your child to the dictionary as a helpful resource. Start with fun and easy words and build up to more challenging ones, and practice, practice, practice. This time well spent will pay off in the long run on college admissions testing with improved vocabulary and writing skills.
Here’s a practice worksheet to get you started, in the fun, eerie spirit of October. Click the link to print our Spooky Dictionary Skills worksheet. Our student dictionary of choice for elementary grades is The Christian Student Dictionary from BJU Press, and all of the words on the printable can be found in this book.