Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Express Yourself!

Alicia Allen
Orange County Schools


Students work as a group to generate and play a game that displays an understanding of developmental level reading vocabulary based on a grade level checklist.


The student uses knowledge of appropriate grade-, age-, and developmental-level vocabulary in reading.


-Anthology or trade book
-Index cards


Note: Students need to have prior experiences with the use of dictionaries.
Teachers use an anthology or weblinks to choose books.

1. Compile a list of developmentally appropriate words from the text, A
high frequency noun list, Fry High frequency wordlist and the Dolch
word list. (or see High Frequency Word List in the associated file)

2. Choose story or passage that contains selected vocabulary. (see web
link)(Optional titles:"Sniffy & Fluffy Have An Adventure" by Aimee'
Bruneau or "Round Bird Can't Fly" by Lea McAndrews)

3. Gather index cards, dictionaries and pencils.

4. List 15 targeted words on the board for each group.


1. Divide students into groups and make them as equal as posible with no
more that four students per group.

2. Introduce selected text.

3. Read a selected story or passage (see Weblinks).

4. After listening to the story, students discuss within their group and
write definitions discovered from context clues for the targeted words
listed on the board. One student in each group records words and

5. Students use a dictionary to check their definitions. Students use
markers to record definitions and words on two separate word cards.
(see game card samples in associated file)

6. Students create a game using the format of Concentration.

7. Students can play the games that they have created for approximately 5
to 10 minutes. Students exchange card games with other groups.
Students play the game of another group for approximately 10 to 15

8. The teacher will circulate and use the check list to observe each
student for demonstrated knowledge of developmental level vocabulary.
Allow student having difficulty to continue with the game and have
other students to help this student to achieve some success. (For
students who have not shown knowledge of vocabulary, circle words
missed on the word list sheet and provide later opportunities for these
students to practice these words with a peer or the teacher. The
teacher can take several avenues to re-assess this student after they
have shown growth:

A. Re-assess on another day that the game is played
by the class.

B. Observe and assess only the student at a later date.

C. Use the word list to assess knowledge of the targeted vocabulary.)

9. After students have shown 50% or more mastery of the targeted
vocabulary the teacher can use the observation form as a summative
evaluation of student progress.


The students, as a group project, create and play a game that demonstrates knowledge of developmental level vocabulary in reading based on a grade level checklist. (see High Frequency Word List in associated file)

In this formative assessment a checklist (see Associated File) is used while observing each group playing a student-made game. If a student or students within the group have difficulty calling words and demonstrating knowledge of word meanings, the student(s) will study the words and meanings for homework and play the game at another time, either with the teacher or in a group while being observed by the teacher for mastery.


-Make and use flashcards to review and practice words not mastered.
Use the rubric and the High Frequency word list.

-Play “Around the World” to review vocabulary not mastered.

Web Links

A collection of original stories with color illustrations for young children as well as older children and young adults.
Children’s Story books Online

A Dolch word list for the Kindergarten grade.
Kindergarten High Frequency Word List

A High Frequency word list and usage information.
Spelling First High Frequency Word list.

An online dictionary.
Word Central Dictionary

Attached Files

Observation Form, word list and sample cards     File Extension: pdf

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