Literature Sources

At the heart of Word Lab are vocabulary lists chosen for their high frequency occurrence in classroom literature and classroom text books. The table below identifies the literature and additional high frequency word lists used as sources for the Word Lab vocabulary lists, sorted by grade level. Click on any of the books or word lists below to learn more about the book and reading levels. We have also included high frequency word lists derived from several easy readers that represent the Latino-American experience. Please note these books/word lists are identified by a small ELL icon.

All ten sets from the Academic Word List are now available. These are highly recommended for junior high and high school students. The U.S. History series incorporates the words most commonly found in 5th through 10th grade U.S. history texts. The first two include geography words and words associated with early American explorers. This series is still in production and will present words grouped by time periods. To see the words targeted in these lists click here.

Word Lab activities incorporate a wide variety of comprehension approaches for each word learned. Most students will complete the vocabulary activities from about eight lists a year, if using the program at the recommended level (1/2 an hour, three times a week). Please feel free to send your suggestions for word lists to us using the contact us form.

Second and Third Grade

The Old Man & His Door by Gary Soto ELL
Chato’s Kitchen by Gary Soto ELL
Tigers at Twilight by Mary Pope Osborne
Dinosaurs Before Dark by Mary Pope Osborne

Third Grade

My Name is Maria Isabel by Alma Flor Ada ELL
The Cat’s Meow by Gary Soto ELL
Stone Fox by John Reynolds Gardiner

Fourth Grade

The Skirt by Gary Soto ELL
Make Four Million Dollars by Next Thursday by Steven Manes
2095 by Jon Scieszka
My Father’s Dragon by Ruth Stiles Gannett
Sarah, Plain and Tall by Patricia MacLachlan
Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White

Fifth Grade

The Story of Harriet Tubman – Freedom Train by Dorothy Sterling
Sign of the Beaver by Elizabeth George Speare
Hatchet by Gary Paulsen
U. S. History: Geography – Common Vocabulary Matching U.S.History Texts
U. S. History: Explorers – Common Vocabulary Matching U.S.History Texts
Sounder by William Armstrong

Six Grade and above

Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson
Call It Courage by Armstrong Sperry
The Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare
A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle
The Master Puppeteer by Katherine Paterson
Academic Word Lists Units 1 – 10(High frequency word lists from middle andhigh school texts.)

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Book Title: Bridge to Terabithia
Author: Katherine Paterson
Content Level: Sixth grade and above
Reading Level: Fifth grade
Genre: Contemporary fiction
Suggestions: Easy starter for sixth graders on their own.

Book Title: The Witch of Blackbird Pond
Author: Elizabeth George Speare
Content Level: Fifth grade and above
Reading Level: Seventh grade
Genre: Historical fiction
Suggestions: Good for integrating with U.S. history (colonial) and a read aloud/along for fifth and sixth graders.

Book Title: The Master Puppeteer
Author: Katherine Paterson
Content Level: Sixth grade and above
Reading Level: Seventh grade
Genre: Historical fiction
Suggestions: Good for integrating with Pacific Rim studies and a read aloud/along for sixth and seventh graders.

Book Title: The Old Man & His Door
Author: Gary Soto
Content Level: Second through sixth grades
Reading Level: Second/third grade
Genre: Picture Story Book
Suggestions: A picture book to be read aloud, this a good starter book for becoming acquainted with Word Lab. The Latino-American background in the story makes it especially appropriate for ELL students.

Book Title: A Wrinkle in Time
Author: Madeleine L’Engle
Content Level: Sixth grade and above
Reading Level: Sixth grade
Genre: Fantasy/Science Fiction
Suggestions: First of a trilogy for independent sixth grade readers.

Book Title: Hatchet
Author: Gary Paulsen
Content Level: Fourth grade and above
Reading Level: Fifth grade
Genre: Adventure
Suggestions: Easy starter for fifth graders on their own.

Book Title: Sign of the Beaver
Author: Elizabeth George Speare
Content Level: Fifth grade and above
Reading Level: Fifth grade
Genre: Historical Fiction
Suggestions: Fits well into U.S. history.

Book Title: My Father’s Dragon
Author: Ruth Stiles Gannett
Content Level: Third and above
Reading Level: Third grade
Genre: Animal Fantasy
Suggestions: Good for older low readers

Book Title: Tigers at Twilight
Author: Mary Pope Osborne
Content Level: Third grade and above
Reading Level: Third grade
Genre: Animal Fantasy
Suggestions: One of the “Magic Tree House” series. Good for older low readers.

Book Title: 2095
Author: Jon Scieszka
Content Level: Fourth grade and above
Reading Level: Fourth grade
Genre: Science Fiction
Suggestions: One of the “Time Warp Trio” series. Good for older low readers.

Book Title: Sarah, Plain and Tall
Author: Patricia MacLachlan
Content Level: Fourth grade and above
Reading Level: Fourth grade
Genre: Historical Fiction
Suggestions: Fits well into U.S. history.

Book Title: Call It Courage
Author: Armstrong Sperry
Content Level: Sixth grade and above
Reading Level: Sixth grade
Genre: Adventure
Suggestions: Short book with challenging vocabulary.

Book Title: Charlotte’s Web
Author: E. B. White
Content Level: Fourth grade and above
Reading Level: Fourth grade
Genre: Animal Fantasy
Suggestions: A good read aloud/along for fourth graders.

Book Title: Sounder
Author: William Armstrong
Content Level: Sixth grade and above
Reading Level: Sixth grade
Genre: Historical Fiction
Suggestions: Fits well into U.S. history.

Book Title: Make Four Million Dollars by Next Thursday
Author: Steven Manes
Content Level: Fifth and Sixth Grade
Reading Level: Fourth grade
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Suggestions: Good starter for struggling readers.

Book Title: Stone Fox
Author: John Reynolds Gardiner
Content Level: Fourth and fifth grade
Reading Level: Third grade
Genre: Adventure
Suggestions: An easy starter book.

Book Title: The Story of Harriet Tubman – Freedom Train
Author: Dorothy Sterling
Content Level: Fifth grade and above
Reading Level: Fifth grade
Genre: Non-fiction
Suggestions: Fits well into U.S. history.

Book Title: My Name Is Maria Isabel
Author: Alma Flor Ada
Content Level: Third grade and above
Reading Level: Third grade
Genre: Fiction
Suggestions: Story of a Latino-American student, especially appropriate for ELL students. Easy starter book for beginning users.

Book Title: The Cat’s Meow
Author: Gary Soto
Content Level: Third grade and above
Reading Level: Third through sixth grade
Genre: Fiction
Suggestions: Story of a Latino-American student, especially appropriate for ELL students. Easy starter book for beginning users.

Book Title: The Skirt
Author: Gary Soto
Content Level: Third through sixth grade
Reading Level: Third and fourth
Genre: Fiction
Suggestions: Story of a two Latino-American girls, especially appropriate for ELL students.

Book Title: Dinosaurs Before Dark
Author: Mary Pope Osborne
Content Level: Second through fourth grade
Reading Level: Second and third
Genre: Fiction
Suggestions: One of the Magic Treehouse Series books.

Book Title: Chato’s Kitchen
Author: Gary Soto
Content Level: Second through sixth grades
Reading Level: Second/third grade
Genre: Picture Story Book
Suggestions: A picture book to be read aloud, this a good starter book for becoming acquainted with Word Lab. The Latino-American background in the story makes it especially appropriate for ELL students.

Book Title: U.S. History: Geography
Author: Variety
Content Level: Fourth through eighth grades
Reading Level: Fifth and sixth grades
Genre: Non-fiction
Suggestions: Common vocabulary designed to match most U.S. history texts.

Book Title: U.S. History: Explorers
Author: Variety
Content Level: Fourth through eighth grades
Reading Level: Fifth and sixth grades
Genre: Non-fiction
Suggestions: Common vocabulary designed to match most U.S. history texts.