Use word banks to enrich vocabulary and support young writers.

One way to support student writing is to provide word banks. With a word bank, kids have immediate access to a range of relevant words, from the “usual” to the challenging.

Try a word bank, me hearties!

There are many creative ways to craft word banks.

For example, in my Pirate Adventure writing workshop, I stealthily provide a rich word bank in a “What’s your pirate name?” warm-up activity. Besides discovering their often-ridiculous pirate names (which students have the option to change!), writers immediately have access to 52 words that they can use and adapt throughout the workshop when developing story characters, treasure map settings, and more.

The word bank includes silly words like Skunkbeard and Stinky McWinky. And it also features delicious real words like Swashbuckler and Hornswoggle. (I had no idea that hornswoggle was a real word meaning “to cheat or swindle” until I looked it up in the dictionary!) And students added their own advanced vocabulary like salmagundi, which is a pirate’s feast.

While I found many “ready-made” resources online for discovering one’s pirate name, I wanted to curate my own list. This enabled me to provide kid-friendly words in a list that matched my Google Slides design.

Want to kick off your own pirate-themed writing activity?

Happy swashbuckling! Yarrrrrrr

Image by Tien Dat Nguyen Huu from Pixabay 

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