Saturday, July 26, 2014

Vocabulary in the Plano ISD

Years ago, when my daughter was in Jasper High School, I made an appointment to see one of her English tests.  Looking at one question, I said to myself, "she could only have gotten this question wrong if she did not know the meaning of 'terse'."  I asked her and she confirmed that she did not know the meaning of the word.  "OMG!" I said to myself.  Then her teacher said, "But you can guess the meaning of the word!"

The teacher then said the word tersely, sort of spitting out the word.  I could see that instead of teaching vocabulary, the ISD administration decided to teach guessing strategies.  What a disaster for my daughter's education.  Thank goodness we have a new administration now at Plano ISD.

I was lucky when I was a kid. One year in elementary school we focused on vocabulary.  We read many stories with words we did not know - big words - and we had to look them up in dictionaries.  I learned most of my adult vocabulary while in elementary school.  The administration at my school had a plan to educate me, not a plan to let me guess my way through literature.

"Forewarned is forearmed" is a great adage.  For my son, when he was in middle-school, I purchased Picture These SAT Words by Philip Geer and Susan Geer.  It is age-appropriate for young people and prepared my son for high school.

I believe the Plano ISD is rebuilding its curriculum and improving the education our children receive.  In the mean time, you might consider watching over your children's vocabulary training.

Forewarned is forearmed!


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