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Crossing the Vocabulary Bridge

Differentiated Strategies for Diverse Secondary Classrooms

Socorro G. Herrera Shabina K. Kavimandan Melissa A. Holmes

208 pages
Teachers College Press

In her new book, nationally known professional development consultant and literacy expert Socorro Herrera is joined by two colleagues to provide a framework for academic vocabulary and language instruction in today’s diverse classrooms. The authors present a set of strategies and tools that work effectively across all content areas to support enhanced comprehension and academic success. The strategies have evolved from over a decade of research and classroom observation to provide teachers with multiple avenues for making content accessible and relevant for all students. Each strategy supports teachers in using what students already know as a foundation for integrating new vocabulary and building content-area language skills. The authors provide a thorough explanation of how to use each strategy to document student knowledge and learning before, during, and after the lesson.

Drawing on current research about how the brain works, second language acquisition, and classroom communities, this user-friendly resource features:

  • Filled-in samples of student work that provide evidence of what is possible.
  • Teacher-to-teacher voices highlighting successful applications in secondary classrooms.
  • Teaching tips to accompany every strategy.
  • Templates for vocabulary-building student artifacts.
Author Bio

Socorro G. Herrera is a keynote speaker, district consultant, trainer of trainers, professor at the College of Education, Kansas State University, and author of the bestselling book, Biography-Driven Culturally Responsive Teaching. She received the 2022 AERA Division K Legacy Award. Shabina K. Kavimandan is a SIOP mentor and Literacy/ESL coach as well as a project manager and instructor at the College of Education, Kansas State University. Melissa A. Holmes is an instructor and program coordinator at the College of Education, Kansas State University, whose work emphasizes academic literacy development with secondary and post-secondary learners.