Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Analysing Vocabulary in Texts

WordSift is a very useful tool for analysing vocabulary in texts and it has some really nice features. On first glance it looks a little like Wordle, but it actually goes much further.
When you paste in your text it generates a tag cloud with the 50 most common words from the text.

If you then click on any of the words you get images from Google and definitions with related words from the visual thesaurus.

This isn't all. If you scroll further down the page you will also see example sentences from the text which use that word.

All of this makes WordSift a very useful tool for students. They can really dig more deeply into text they have studied and pull out vocabulary with words, definitions and images which they could collect together in a digital vocabulary book.

They could also use this tool before reading to prepare new vocabulary and predict what the text would be about and what the genre or structure of the text would be.

Great tool. I hope you find a place for it in your bag of teaching tricks.

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Nik Peachey

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