As part of our 6-12 vertical teaming, the social studies department has placed a renewed emphasis on the direct teaching of vocabulary. Department members took part in a day-long workshop to learn about explicit teaching of vocabulary terms as well as reviewing formative assessment strategies. The workshop encouraged each grade level team to create their own course vocabulary list. Teachers have been asked to use both tier two and tier three words. Teachers were taught a six step approach to teaching vocabulary that included having students write their own definitions and create their own graphic representations for each word in their notebooks. Students then work with the words during the unit. Several ideas were shared to help teachers develop a word-conscious classroom including the use of word walls. The Vocabulary Workshop Powerpoint can be found at at this site.