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A Level English Language Starters: Language Change

Beth Kemp | Tuesday March 12, 2013


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  • A Level English Language Starters: Frameworks & Analysis
  • A Level English Language Starters: Accent & Dialect
  • A Level English Language Starters: Language & Gender
  • A Level English Language Starters: Mode & Technology
  • A Level English Language Starters: Child Language Acquisition
  • A Level English Language Starters: Language & Power

What’s this? is a great starter in the early stages of studying new words.  Simply collect five very recent new words that are currently not widely used.  (Internet articles on new words are a great source of these words that are not yet in everyday usage). These can be displayed on a slide for students to note down (in a fixed time) what they think they mean.  This can easily be extended into the next phase of the lesson by selecting words all formed by a single process, e.g. all blends, to enable you to shift into teaching that process.

Where did they come from? works well for teaching word formation processes.  Again, you will need a stock of recent additions (although this time it doesn’t matter whether students are likely to be familiar with them or not), with definitions.  The point here is for students to attempt to describe how the word has been created.  This can be done before introducing word formation terminology, as students can explain in their own words how each word has come about, with the labels being provided at the end of the activity.  At this stage, labels can be taught and explained, or students can attempt to guess which label describes which process in a matching-type task, as many of the labels are logical. 

Another way of doing this one is to provide each student with a new word for them to work on individually.  This can then enable students to form groups by finding others with the same process, which can be a productive way of managing groups for the next task and facilitate differentiation. 

New words needed is a nice activity inviting students to invent...

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