Versatile Vocabulary: Games for enhancing vocabulary
Versatile Vocabulary has been specially created to encourage students, through games, to use vocabulary in a variety of ways: defining words, using words in sentences, spelling words, acting out words, changing word forms and generating new words. The vocabulary has been carefully chosen from various concordances of the most frequently used words. It is vocabulary that ESL/EFL students need to know, and for most of the games, templates have been provided that allow teachers to customize games to practise their own target vocabulary.
- 21 photocopiable games featuring the words most frequently used by English speakers
- Teacher’s notes for each game, with suggested variations to the game
- Templates for teachers and students to create their own versions
1 Jan 1999
Number of pages: 124
1: Alien Attack!
2: Race to the Top
3: Definition Dice
4: Word Patterns
5: Word Design Diamonds
6: Vocabulary Vortex
7: Cue Cubes
8: The Secret Word
9: What Is the Meaning of this Charade?
10: Successful Student
11: Lexical Ladder
12: Verbal Baseball
13: Jigsaw Joinings
14: POS Placement
15: Parts of Speech Journey
16: Close Call
17: Creative Categories
18: Word Search
19: Alphabet Soup
20: Five in a Row
21: One of a Kind
Jennifer Meldrum has worked in the field of English language teaching for over 15 years. She taught English in the United States, China, South Korea, Syria and the United Arab Emirates. She is also an ESOL teacher trainer.
Jennifer co-authored two photocopiable teacher resource books for Garnet Education: Get Going with Grammar and Versatile Vocabulary. Her partnership with Barbara Reimer grew out of their working relationship at UAE University, where they found themselves taking similar approaches to their ESL classes. Their common interest in games development led to their first project, which quickly led to their second. The games in their books were piloted in their own classrooms with overwhelmingly positive reviews and they decided to share them with others.
Currently, Jennifer is a teacher trainer in Boston, MA, USA and continues to work with ESL materials as an editor and writer.
Barbara Reimer has been in the ESP field for over 15 years, and has taught in Canada, Japan and the Middle East. She is currently teaching in the development program at UAE University, the national university located in Al Ain, UAE.
Barbara co-authored two photocopiable teacher resource books for Garnet Education: Get Going with Grammar and Versatile Vocabulary. Her partnership with Jennifer Meldrum grew out of their working relationship at UAE University, where they found themselves taking similar approaches to their ESL classes. Their common interest in games development led to their first project, which quickly led to a second. Having “field-tested’ these games in their classrooms, they decided to share them with others, in the hope that others would also find them useful. The overwhelminghly positive response they have received bears out this expectation. The books led to requests for presentations at TESOL Arabia, as well as several other conferences.
Barbara has just completed a new course book for the University, following the set curriculum objectives of the development program, and which focuses on topics and content specific to the region and interests of the students.
"Excellent - especially for summer school courses. Both book were extensively used again this year."
- Harrow School, UK
“When I played the games with my classes, it quickly became apparent that they were enjoyable and engaging. Advanced students could support intermediate students while still feeling challenged. Beginner students struggled, but a few games could be adapted for them. My students were pleasantly surprised both by how much they knew and how much they could learn in a short time. They were motivated by the chance to use prior knowledge to compete while learning something new about each word. Preparation was required, but as Meldrum and Reimer point out, the game materials can be used repeatedly.”
- Jane Rycroft for IATEFL Voices, Issue 230, January / February 2013
"Like Get Going with Grammar by the same author, Versatile Vocabulary again provides teachers and students with a wide variety of photocopiable games, this time for 'enhancing vocabulary'. The layout is the same as Get Going with Grammar: clear teacher's notes describe the game and its objective and suggest variations. The following pages give the templates of the basic game for example, cards with the vocabulary to be practised as well as empty templates for adapted versions. The various games encourage students to use vocabulary in a variety of ways: defining, spelling, acting out, changing word forms and generating new words. The vocabulary contained in this book is mainly aimed at higher level students and so the games may give FCE and CAE students a challenging way to practise word formation and spelling or can help them further activate some of their vocabulary. Besides unusual ideas, like verbal baseball or the vocabulary vortex, this book also contains some well-known games, but with a slightly different twist, e.g., a word search with some empty spaces which students can fill with additional letters in order to create words or a 'one of a kind' table with challenging sections (e.g., transportation, feeling, entertainment). So as with their first book, Get Going with Grammar, the authors have again managed to offer teaches a wealth of material - Versatile Vocabulary will get you going and maybe even train the teacher's brain in versatility."
- Elsbeth M