Thursday, September 3, 2009

Roots and Fruits (Vocabulary)

 image Roots and Fruits is an easy-to-use vocabulary program for grades K-12. The manual includes an alphabetized list of  673 Greek and Latin roots and prefixes with their meanings. Under each root or prefix, vocabulary words are listed that contain those roots.

A student is expected to learn 2 “roots” and the accompanying vocabulary words each week. The basic procedure each week is:

Monday: Post the roots and vocabulary words on a chart on the wall. Write the roots and vocabulary words on index cards with definitions.Tuesday – Friday: Review the roots, words, and meanings. Make sentences with the words. Choose from a list of activities and games  to reinforce the words.

Pros:

--One book ($14.98-$19.98) covers many years of study and can be used by multiple children. This would be great for a family with several children who could study the same words and/or roots each week.

--It is easy to use. It can be done fairly independently in only 15 minutes a day.

--Learning Greek and Latin roots is a great vocabulary builder, enabling the child to figure out the meanings of words he or she has never seen before. It would also give teens a leg up on SAT preparation.

Cons:

--I would want to do some additional vocabulary work at some point, since many English words are not derived from Greek and Latin roots.

--I personally would not use Roots and Fruits with children under third grade.  I think it would be more advantageous with children who are already competent readers and can work somewhat independently.

Our use of Roots and Fruits:

We own the game, “Rummy Roots.” The older kids used to play it frequently, but Emily has never used it. I am choosing word roots each week that correspond with the roots in the Rummy Roots Game. This is giving us another option for practicing and reinforcing the roots and vocabulary she has already learned!

I have the e-book version of the book. I printed it and put it in a three-ring binder. The index cards are kept in a pocket in the binder. Emily does her sentence writing in a spiral notebook, although I suppose I could have added loose leaf pages to the binder for that.

A sample of Roots and Fruits can be downloaded free at the EDUDPS site.

 

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