Focus on Vocabulary
"Readers need to know the words that authors use. You only have so much time, be sure to invest it in teaching words that will open the most doors to understanding..." Dr. Timothy Shanahan
Language Standard 4, in grades 3-8. focuses on understanding the meaning of words by looking inside the word at its word parts - including root words, prefixes and suffixes, and looking outside the word using context clues in nearby sentences as well as using reference materials, such as a dictionary, to determine a word's meaning. Take a look at the Common Core State Standards for Language, specific to vocabulary acquistion below.
At home, parents can support their student's vocabulary development each day. We all learn words by listening in conversations, listening to books read aloud, and reading widely on our own. This is called incidental learning, and is often interest-based. Many words have multiple meanings, so as students are exposed to the word in its different forms, they store that new information in a new place in their brain.