Elementary English Language Arts
Material Type:
Upper Elementary
  • Lesson Plan
  • Phonemes
  • Syllable Types
  • Vocabulary
  • letrs
  • mcgraw hill
  • mcgraw-hill
  • phonemes
  • syllable-types
  • vocabulary
    Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial
    Media Formats:

    Education Standards

    Vocabulary Words

    Vocabulary Words


    This is a lesson plan is an example of how to teach a new vocabulary word using the suggestions of McGraw-Hill and LETRS training. This lesson explains how to incorporate syllable types and phoneme counting into your vocabulary lesson.


    This lesson is a step by step guide on how to teach vocabulary words. Each word should take 5-8 minutes to complete and can be taught synchronous, face-to-face, or virtual. The ideas in this lesson stem from LETRS training guildelines and McGraw-Hill Wonders.

    The image I found for my cover page was found through the clipart-library.


    Background for Teachers

    To teach this lesson you will need to understand syllable types, phonemes, word definitions, synonyms and antonyms. Here is a helpful link when learning or teaching syllable types:

    This is a helpful resource to teach students about syllable types:

    This is also a good resource to explain why teaching vocabulry in-depth is important to our students:



    Step 1 - Goals and Outcomes

    Step 1 Goals and Outcomes

    Learning Intentions:

    Students will be able to read new vocabulary words in text, define those words, and use these words correctly in conversations and writing.

    Success Criteria:

    Students will find the voabulary words in the daily story, define those words and use them in a sentence. At the end of the week students will be able to write a sentence using the new vocabulary words.


    Step 2 - Planning Instruction

    Step 2 Planning Instruction

    Student Background Knowledge

    Prior to this lesson students will need to have been taught the syllable types and how to break words into syllables, introduced to phonemes and how to count them, and taught what a synonyms and antonyms are.

    Strategies for Diverse Learners

    Make sure to include pictures depicting vocabulary words, if it is a difficult word or a word with multiple meanings, use multiple pictures and discuss other meanings.

    Step 3 - Instruction

    Step 3 Instruction

    To begin, I put the vocabulary word and its picture on the board.

    I say: the word is gravity, whats the word? The students say: gravity.

    I say: how many syllables are in the word gravity? Students count using different methods we have discussed, such as clapping the word or feeling our throats to find the syllables. They show with their fingers how many syllables they found. Then we count together.

    I write three lines on the board. I ask the class what the first syllable is and call on someone to spell it out. Then I call on someone else to tell me the syllable type which I label underneath that line. They follow along in their notebooks until we complete the word.

    I ask how many phonemes are in the word. They tap it out and hold up how many phonemes they hear and then we do it together. We say the sound and the letter or letters that make that sound.

    I then ask students for definitions of what that word means, helping them as much or as little as needed. I ask for synonyms and antonyms and we write these down as well.

    I ask students to use the new word in a sentence.

    Once we are finished discussing our vocabulary word, we read our daily story with the word included. Students raise their hands when they see the word in the text and then they tell the class what the word means in their own words. We read multiple stories through out the week that use our vocabulary words and at the end of the week they write a sentence for each of their vocabulary words.

    They do not have to learn to spell them correctly, but they do try.


    • Links:

    To teach students about synoynm, antonyms and homophones, this nearpod is helpful.


    Step 4 - Assessments

    Step 4 Assessments


    The way I assess my students and their understanding of the new vocabulary word is by using a pre-assessment, by asking what does this word mean? I am able to see pretty quickly how many students are familiar with the word and to what degree. I use formative assessment while discussing the word, finding synonyms, antonyms and then using the word in sentences. We continue reviewing the word, reading it in text, and defining the word through out the week. Students are able to self-monitor during our read alouds by determining if they can define the word or use it in a sentence. My summative assessment is at the end of the week when students write their own sentences using the vocabulary word.

    The rubric I use for assessing my students understanding of vocabulary words is a 0-5 rubric.

    5-Student used the word correctly in a sentence and their sentence used capitalization, punctuation and all words were spelled correctly.
    4-Student used the word correctly in a sentence, but had spelling mistakes or forgot to capitalize or punctuate their sentence.
    3-Student wrote the word and a correct meaning but not in a sentence.
    2-Student wrote the word but nothing else.
    1-Student tried to write the word but they were unsuccessful.
    0-Student did not make an attempt.