Students bring words to life

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Julius Barron illustrates his phrase “rectangular prism” by wearing amicrowave costume during the Vocabulary Parade at Rivera Elementary School on Wednesday.
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Educators at Rivera Elementary School in Denton turned dressing up for Halloween into a lesson in vocabulary Wednesday.

Wearing a wide array of costumes with words and phrases attached to the garments, students marched the halls for the school’s first Vocabulary Parade.

Student costumes ranged from one wearing a lab coat and goggles with the word “inventor” attached to his coat to a student dressed as a school bus with the word “transportation.”

Some costumes with math and science themes included garments depicting fractions, decimals, sedimentary rocks, fossil fuels and conservation. The school’s youngest students wore paper hats and other decorations depicting various shapes.

As students marched, they waved and teachers took their photos.

School staff also got in on the action, wearing costumes ranging from dressing as a baby and displaying the word “nurturing” to another wearing a graduation cap and gown and presenting the word “knowledge” on her garment.

Costumes were also movie- and theater-themed and included Mary Poppins with the phrase “supercalifragilisticexpialidocious,” and a teacher dressed up as Elliott from the movie E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial. She carried a makeshift bicycle with an E.T.-stuffed animal inside representing the word “extraterrestrial.” Another dressed as Elphaba, the Wicked Witch of the West from Broadway’s Wicked, and she displayed the word “misunderstood.”

“It helps the learning environment to do something fun and enriching like this,” said Talle Gómez, Rivera Elementary’s assistant principal.

Students have fun with it, she said, and don’t even realize they’re learning simultaneously. Gómez said photos of costumes and the vocabulary words were taken Wednesday and will be used to create “word walls” for future vocabulary building exercises.

Letters were sent home with students about the Vocabulary Parade two weeks ago, according to school officials.

Students in the upper-grade levels researched the vocabulary words they wanted to display and some even created their own costumes to match the words, school counselor Rene Shelton said.

The parade was a way to boost student vocabulary, Shelton said. Vocabulary, she said, is a building block in the learning process.

“The better [the] vocabulary, the better reader you are,” she said.

Audrey Bryant, another Rivera counselor, said the parade coincides with the school’stheme, “Safari to Success.”

“This [vocabulary] would be one step in our safari to success,” she said.

BRITNEY TABOR can be reached at 940-566-6876. Her e-mail address is btabor@dentonrc.com .


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