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Repeat reading key to vocabulary growth

22/02/2011 Kelly
Younger pupils can improve their vocabularies if they are read the same books again and again by teachers, a study shows.

Researchers at Sussex University examined how three-year-olds acquire new words by setting up an experiment where a group of children were read three stories featuring a pair of new words while one group was read just one story.

The participants were observed for a week and the results showed that those children that had only one story with new words were more capable of recalling the new words than those exposed to more stories, suggesting repetition is key to expanding a vocabulary.

Lead researcher Dr Jessica Horst pointed out that if new words are introduced in multiple contexts they can be more easily forgotten.

"I think the message here could be that children don't necessarily need a vast quantity of books, but they do benefit from repeated exposure to those books," she said.

Recent research from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development found that children who participated in pre-school education tend to be better readers at the age of 15 than their contemporaries.

Posted by Alan DouglasADNFCR-2164-ID-800419182-ADNFCR
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