High Definition

  • Title:High Definition: Unforgettable Vocabulary-Building Strategies Across Genres and Subjects
  • Author:Sara Holbrook , Michael Salinger
  • Publication Date:September 2010
  • Grade Level:4-10
  • ISBN:9780325031491
  • Publisher:Heinemann

Any teacher who has challenged a sunny day with the phrase "vocabulary lesson" only to see a dark cloud descend over the room knows that students can be downright word resistant. Break out of the vocabulary doldrums once and for all with High Definition, a whole new approach to vocabulary instruction that’s not just effective, but energizing, sociable, and fun.

When kids envision a word as if it were a real person, with a unique voice and personality, they forever imprint the meaning of the word into their memories. Vocabulary lessons become anything but dull, and still blend seamlessly into your writing objectives. Veteran teacher-authors Sara Holbrook and Michael Salinger offer a powerful formula for getting even the most reluctant kids into the act:

Well-chosen Words + Collaborative Discussion + Genre Writing + Performance = Strong Vocabulary

Students are first given a choice of vocabulary words, then collaborate with their peers in small- group brainstorming discussions that lead to writing exercises in a variety of genres. Finally they share their work aloud, building community and understanding throughout the classroom.

Everything you need to put High Definition into action is included:

  • Sample word lists give you an immediate starting place for choosing vocabulary words
  • Collaboration Cheat Sheets offer instant pre-write organizational help
  • Clear explanations of each genre include ways you can build on what kids already know in their lives
  • Student samples throughout provide inspiring examples of how students take the definition of words way beyond what’s offered in dictionaries
  • Lesson Process Plans show you how to use writing, collaboration, and performance across genres and content areas.

Help your kids build strong and lively vocabularies. Teach with High Definition and discover how to make words unforgettable.


Author Bio

Sara Holbrook is a full-time educator, author/poet, and consultant, who has been teaching in classrooms across the U.S. and abroad for more than 20 years. An award-winning performance poet and frequent keynote speaker, she is also the author of over a dozen books for children, adults, and teachers, including Practical Poetry.

A fixture in the performance poetry and education community, Michael Salinger has been writing and performing poetry and fiction for over 20 years. His work has appeared in dozens of literary journals, and he has coauthored two professional books with Sara: Outspoken! and High-Definition.

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