Vocabulary Unit

Vocabulary is one of my favorite things to work with my students. It expands their communication skills, writing abilities, and comprehension skills. I love being that efficient in my instruction. My literacy program consists of  Guided Reading, individualized spelling instruction, daily fluency timings, writing centers, and vocabulary. We need a well rounded curriculum to make sure our guys are getting everything they need related to building up those language arts skills.

Kids with autism struggle with language development and benefit from direct instruction on learning new vocabulary words. I really saw these words generalize to my students’ writing and conversation which was great. We work on these words in our daily morning group and take a quiz on the words a the end of the week.

I created a list of 150 vocabulary words – these are words pulled from 2nd and 3rd grade vocabulary lists and functional/life skills words. This resource contains 5 words a week for the whole year. Included are flashcards and definition cards. The definitions for all of these words are purposefully simple and concrete. Since many of our students struggle with language abilities, it can be hard to explain a new word using language they may or may not understand. So I tried to keep definitions direct and to the point.

I display these in my morning meeting area in a pocket chart:

And then once they are masted they go up on the Word Wall (it’s so empty now….).

You may also decide to incorporate vocabulary words into your homework.Students will fill out this form with their words for the week. You can also use these sheets for daily practice within your room.

And each day complete a worksheet:

This whole packet includes 150 words with definitions, weekly homework sheets, and a data sheet.

Here are the list of words if you are interested:


View a product preview 🙂



  1. Do you use this for all of your kids, or just your higher level readers and writers? Just wondering how to use this with my verbal kids (who I could see would benefit from this from a language POV) who are still low level readers and writers. Thanks!

  2. I use this for my readers to work on writing and reading the vocabulary words but for my verbal students who struggle with reading we work on “talking” about these words. We practice saying them in sentences and what they mean. I think it’s great to expand language as well!


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *