How to Teach Math Vocabulary

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  • 0:00 Teaching Math Vocabulary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Marquis Grant
This lesson will highlight ways in which you can teach math vocabulary to your students. A short quiz will follow to test your knowledge about math-related teaching strategies.

Teaching Math Vocabulary

Most people usually associate vocabulary with language arts class. However, every subject area has its own words or phrases that students must learn in order to be successful. Math is no exception. As students move beyond basic addition, subtraction, multiplication and division, math-related concepts can become a little more challenging.

Teaching math-related language (i.e., vocabulary) is probably the best starting point when teaching concepts and processes students will come across during instruction, activities and assessments. When students have a solid understanding of math-related language, they have the skills needed to be actively involved in the math classroom.

Vocabulary strategies for the math classroom are similar to those used in language-arts instruction. Strategies are methods that you and your students use to support their learning processes. Teachers should look for opportunities to build vocabulary into their mathematics lesson plans. When you teach math vocabulary before plunging into your lesson content, you will give your students an opportunity to learn important words and phrases. For example, it would probably be a good idea to define the term 'inequality' and give students concrete examples of what an inequality is and what an inequality is not. Once you have established that students have a firm understanding of the term, you can move ahead with the related lesson.

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