Semantic Mapping is a strategy for graphically representing concepts. A Semantic Word Map allows students to conceptually explore their knowledge of a new word by mapping it alongside other related words/phrases similar in meaning.
The purpose of creating a Semantic Word Map is to visually display the meaning-based connections between a word and a set of related words/ phrases. Semantic maps help students, especially struggling students and those with disabilities, to identify, understand and recall the meaning of words they read in a text.
- One short text at appropriate instructional level
- Whiteboard, overhead, or some type of visual projector for the class to view during instruction
- Paper or notebook
- Semantic Mapping Sheet
Procedure (Student Procedure):
Pick a word you don’t know from a text you are reading and underline or highlight the word.
Draw a map or web of the word.
Place the word in the center of the map.
Pronounce the word.
Read the text around the word to see if there are related words you can add to your map.
Use an online dictionary or online thesaurus to look up the word and find a definition.
Find words and phrases that fit with the meaning. Draw pictures that fit with the meaning. Add these words, phrases, and images to your semantic map.
Read the text again, applying the meaning of the word to the text.
Share your map with your classmates.
Create a whole class Semantic Maps on the blackboard when focusing on vocabulary instruction.
Use online supports (dictionaries, thesaurus, text-to-speech supports) when needed.
How to use with ThinkCERCA
During Applied Reading & Writing lessons or Direct Instruction lessons, Semantic Mapping can be used as an individual or whole class activity for a deeper understanding in all subject areas.