As a parent, you play a crucial role in your child’s education, including helping them prepare for the 11 Plus exams.
A critical aspect of preparation is building a solid vocabulary, as a rich vocabulary can improve reading comprehension, writing skills, and overall academic performance.
Here are some practical tips you can use to help your child build their vocabulary for the 11 Plus exams.
Reading is one of the most effective ways to build vocabulary, as it exposes children to a wide range of words and contexts in which they are used. Encourage your child to read a variety of texts, including books, magazines, and newspapers, and to pay attention to words they don’t know. You can also read aloud to your child and discuss the meanings of new words together.
Use a dictionary
A dictionary is an invaluable tool for building vocabulary. Encourage your child to use a dictionary when they come across a word they don’t know and to look up the definition as well as any other information that may be helpful, such as synonyms, antonyms, and examples of usage. You can also help your child learn how to use a thesaurus, which can be a helpful tool for finding alternative words with similar meanings.
Practice using new words
Once your child has learned the meaning of a new word, please encourage them to use it in a sentence to help them remember it. You can also have them write a short paragraph using the new word, create flashcards with the word on one side and the definition on the other, and quiz themselves. Another helpful exercise is to have your child create a story using as many new words as possible, which can help them remember them in context.
Play word games
Word games can be fun and engaging to help your child build their vocabulary. Scrabble, crossword puzzles, and Boggle are all great options, and many online and app-based word games can be played on a phone or tablet. Word games not only help children learn new words, but they also improve their problem-solving and critical-thinking skills.
Learn prefixes and suffixes
Prefixes and suffixes are word parts that are added to the beginning or end of a word to change its meaning. For example, the prefix “un-” can be added to the front of the word “happy” to form the word “unhappy.”
Knowing common prefixes and suffixes can help children figure out the meanings of new words more easily, as they can often guess the meaning of a word based on its prefix or suffix. You can help your child learn common prefixes and suffixes by creating flashcards with examples and having them practice using them in sentences. Try our Prefixes and Suffixes Workbook and Dictionary to help your child master their prefix and suffixes knowledge.
Building vocabulary is an integral part of preparing for the 11 Plus exams, and as a parent, you can play a crucial role in helping your child succeed. By encouraging your child to read widely, using a dictionary, practising using new words, playing word games, and learning prefixes and suffixes, you can help your child build a strong vocabulary that will serve them well in their academic pursuits.