InferCabulary’s vocabulary team is made up of educators who have been in the classroom for decades. We have pioneered a research-backed approach called semantic reasoning that efficiently and deeply teaches words that are critical for students to know throughout their school years and beyond. To ensure students are encountering words that matter, we have carefully curated word lists that are in line with best practice instruction.
Although several approaches exist for thinking about words, we find Beck & McKeown’s tiering approach to be a good framework. We know that focusing on Tier Two words (i.e., words that are most often encountered in text, provide nuanced understanding, and will be encountered in multiple contexts across the curriculum) gives students the most “bang for their buck.”
Our speech, language and literacy team is a huge fan of the work of Beck & McKeown, Biemiller, Marzano, Templeton, Ganske, and Heibert, among others. We have explored lists of all kinds, including Words Worth Teaching, The Academic Word List, Academic Collocation List, Living Word Vocabulary, The New General Services List, and SAT/ACT lists to name a few. We have identified words that are more generally “worth knowing” by grade level and made those available to you and your students. Finally, we curated a few lists to help students with English Language Arts (e.g., emotion words that will assist them in identifying the author's purpose and tone) and for preparing for standardized tests.