What is Vocabulary?

Vocabulary, simply put, is words. Everybody has their own vocabulary which consists of words they know. The vocabulary a person has for words they are able to read may be different then the vocabulary they have for sight words, as well as the vocabulary they may have for words they know the definition for. There are also different kinds of vocabulary. There is vocabulary we understand – receptive vocabulary. We see this most often in toddlers when, for example, we ask them if they want “up,” they may gesture they want up, but don’t actually say they want up. Then, eventually they develop an expressive vocabulary or words they are able to say. There is also academic vocabulary which are the words we generally only use in the world of academia. These words are important and useful, but we usually do not use them often outside of the classroom.