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The Experts Speak

In these short videos, four renowned literacy experts—advisors for the Martha Speaks television series—offer a "mini-tutorial" on the importance of teaching vocabulary, the basics of vocabulary instruction, and how teachers can integrate new vocabulary into their everyday lessons. Each expert not only provides practical advice, but also explains vocabulary theory and how a talking dog named Martha can help your students build their vocabulary and enhance their love of reading and books. In addition, two classroom teachers describe their experiences with the innovative Martha Speaks Reading Buddies program.

Catherine Snow explores the impact of the vocabulary gap on later learning and how to overcome it. Andrew Biemiller discusses how you can expand all children's vocabulary. Linda Kucan explains the importance and value of teaching "robust" words. Mariela Páez offers vocabulary instruction strategies for English language learners, and Joseph Cooke and Weddy Youn share the benefits of the Martha Speaks Reading Buddies program for kindergarten and upper-elementary students.

As an additional word-building resource, Martha Speaks advisor Michael Graves has developed The First 4,000 Words, an interactive Web-based program designed to teach the 4,000 most frequently used English words to English Language Learners and struggling readers in grades 1 through 4, using game-like scenarios and speech recognition technology.

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