University of Texas at Austin wordmarkUniversity of Texas at AustinCollege of Liberal Arts wordmarkCollege of Liberal Arts

Texas Beyond History

TBH Home

Vocabulary Charts

Download lesson plan and included materials

Subject: Social Studies

Grade: 4th. Can be adapted for other grade levels.

Author: Alice Elia, revised by Jason Terry (2023)

Time Duration: Two 45-minute class periods, depending on the number of vocabulary words.

Objective: Students will use a vocabulary graphic organizer tool to better understand social studies terms. This graphic organizer can be used with almost any social studies terminology to help students gain an understanding of applicable terms and their meaning.

TEKS: Social Studies, Grade 4

  • (19C), organize and interpret information in outlines, reports, databases, and visuals, including graphs, charts, timelines, and maps
  • (21A), use social studies terminology correctly
  • (21C), express ideas orally based on research and experiences


Activities and Procedures:

Step 1: Hand out vocabulary worksheets to the students. Make sure they have enough space to do all the vocabulary words.

Step 2: Print vocabulary words where children can easily read them:

  • Archeology (also spelled Archaeology)
  • Atlatl
  • Coprolite
  • Fire Drill
  • Flint
  • Historic Period
  • Knap
  • Midden
  • Nomad
  • Projectile Point
  • Quid
  • Rockshelter
  • Shaman
  • Sherd

Step 3: Allow students access to the New Words Dictionary ( and other/printed dictionary. Have them look up the words and fill in the worksheet with the requested information. One box on the vocabulary chart is purposely blank for the teacher to use at their discretion. It might be used for the students to make inferences about what an item or object is used for etc.

Extension Activities: Have students get into groups of 3-4. Assign each group 2-3 vocabulary words. Have students write a short skit in which they use each word at least 3 times correctly, then act out skits to the class.