Math in a Minute: Vocabulary Edition

Volume 3 Issue 20

Hexagonal Thinking

This strategy is a great way to have learners connect  and use vocabulary words. Write vocabulary words (about 12) on the hexagons. Learners connect the words by touching sides. Every time two sides touch there must be a connection between the words. For younger learners, the hexagons can contain pictures instead of words. Whatever you use, this strategy is great for vocabulary development. Here are a few math examples:

Here is a video of Hexagonal Thinking in Kindergarten:

Heads Up

If you have used the app Heads Up, you know how fun this game can be! While the app is fun, it does not cover the mathematical vocabulary that we would like to develop in our learners. Write vocabulary words on notecards.  Mix up all the cards and then distribute them throughout the class.  Learners put the card against their forehead with the word facing outwards.  Their partner describes the word that is on the card while the person holding the card tries to guess the word.  
Don't want to use notecards?  Try this digital option using Keynote or Google Slides:


We've heard of the television show, but have you tried using Survivor with vocabulary? Display about 6 words or pictures and ask "Which one of these would you vote off the island?"  Learners will discuss in small groups which one they would vote off and justify their answer. The discussions are always rich with vocabulary! Here are a few examples:

One Best Answer

                                       One Best Answer provides an opportunity to collaborate. Each person in the group of 4 will write their own definition to a word.  Once they are finished, each person shares their definition.  Together, the group decides what part of each person's definition can be added to a collective "best answer."  This can also be used with how to solve problems!

Vocabulary Ratings

When you ask a kid if they know a word, and they have heard the word before, they think they know it.  But do they really understand the meaning of the word?  Vocabulary ratings is a great way for kids to track their understanding of a word.  

Vocabulary Resources

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