"This little book is a gem. It shows how teachers can teach word meanings so powerfully that students of all ages will be able to grasp an author's meaning or communicate their own more effectively. The book offers a well-organized and first-rate plan for teaching vocabulary, presented by a team of researchers with a genuine grasp of the practical."--Timothy Shanahan, PhD, Center for Literacy, University of Illinois at Chicago
"This book succinctly addresses the challenges of teaching and developing vocabulary, providing research-based, clearly spelled-out strategies and many, many rich examples. It gives teachers the tools they need to effectively increase students' vocabularies. Reflecting the authors' own expertise with words, the book is written clearly enough for undergraduates, yet has a level of depth that will lend new insights to even the most advanced student of language and literacy. This book should be required reading in teacher and reading specialist preparation programs and should be used in in-service programs with reading, language arts, and English teachers as well as with content area teachers. If the strategies and suggestions offered in this book were widely and intensely implemented, we would see significant increases in students' verbal abilities and reading comprehension scores."--John J. Pikulski, PhD, School of Education, University of Delaware
"Bringing Words to Life lives up to its title. It made me want to gather a group of kids immediately, so I could start putting these sensible, practical, novel, and intriguing ideas about building vocabulary into practice. Beck, McKeown, and Kucan show how much fun learning words and teaching words can be. Every early childhood and elementary teacher should have this book on their bedside table for inspirational reading."--Catherine E. Snow, PhD, Graduate School of Education, Harvard University
"All educators who are lovers of the English language will thoroughly enjoy and reap the benefits of this articulate book. The authors present a brilliant rationale for delivering lively and direct vocabulary instruction. They offer excellent advice on how to select rich words, present them to students, and help them revel in their usefulness!"--MaryAnne Rossbach, MEd, sixth-grade teacher, Sunrise Valley Elementary School, Reston, VA
About the Author
Isabel L. Beck, PhD, is Professor Emerita of Education in the School of Education at the University of Pittsburgh. She has conducted research and published widely in the areas of decoding, vocabulary, and comprehension. Her contributions have been acknowledged by awards from the International Reading Association, the National Reading Conference, and the American Federation of Teachers, and she is an elected member of the National Academy of Education.
Margaret G. McKeown, PhD, is a Senior Scientist at the Learning Research and Development Center of the University of Pittsburgh. Her research on reading comprehension and vocabulary has been published extensively in outlets for both researcher and practitioner audiences. Dr. McKeown is a recipient of the Dissertation of the Year Award from the International Reading Association and a National Academy of Education Spencer Fellowship. Before her career in research, she taught elementary school.
Linda Kucan, PhD, is Assistant Professor in the Department of Instruction and Learning at the University of Pittsburgh School of Education. In addition to vocabulary instruction, her research interests include classroom talk about texts and the design of meaningful and motivating tasks to support comprehension of text.