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4-Square Word Map

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Lesson Type: Reintroduce
Grade: 2, 3
Group Size: Individual, Pair, Small Group, Large Group, Whole Class
Length: 10 minutes
Goal: Given a vocabulary word, students will develop an understanding of the word by using a picture, a synonym, and a sentence.

Materials: 4-Square Word Map (print here), board or chart paper

What to Do


Print out a copy of the 4-Square Word Map for each student in the class. Create a large version of the 4-Square Word Map on chart paper to model the activity. Use the chart paper or the board to display vocabulary words with their meanings.


1. Review the vocabulary words you wish to cover with the class.

2. Model how to use the graphic organizer. Involve your students as you explain, filling out the 4-Square Word Map as they respond to your questions.

Today, we will learn more about our new vocabulary words by completing a word map.

Who can remember one of the new vocabulary words we learned? Who can give us a definition of the word? Who can give us a synonym of the word? Who can think of a way to draw this word? Who can use this word in a sentence?

Call on students to share their ideas.


3. Have the students complete the 4-Square Word Map. Students can complete graphic organizers for the same words or be assigned different words to work on in pairs or groups.

Now it’s your turn to complete a 4-Square Word Map for a vocabulary word. Remember to complete each part of the word map.

4. Walk around to monitor the students’ performance. As a wrap-up, have volunteers share their work.


For Advanced Students:

After they have finished, allow these students to look up the vocabulary word in a dictionary. Ask them to compare their definitions and the dictionary definition.

For Struggling Students:

Give students who need extra help the chance to work with a partner.

For ELL Students:

Some ELL students may have difficulty writing a definition of the vocabulary word; in this case working with them in small groups is helpful. Give students who need extra help the chance to work with a partner.

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