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ESOL Online. Every child literate - a shared responsibility.
Ministry of Education.


Vocabulary lists

A Teaching Resource for Using the Picture Dictionary for New Learners of English (446 kB) :This teaching resource introduces over 1,000 words widely used in the context of everyday life in New Zealand. It is available from teacher resource centres and selected bookshops. 

Nation, I. S. P., ed. (1996). Vocabulary lists
This resource lists vocabulary in terms of its frequency. It includes the first 1,000, second 1,000, third 1,000, and the University word lists developed by Paul Nation.

The Internet Picture Dictionary: Online multilingual picture dictionary designed especially for ESOL students.

Lextutor word lists This site has a set of diagnostic vocabulary tests, and a corresponding set of vocabulary lists linked to concordance, dictionary, and quizzes to help you explore the nuances of form, meaning, and collocation of the words on these lists.

Academic vocabulary

NCEA vocabulary:

Glossary of key words: The language of examinations and assessment tasks - a glossary of key words (Board of Studies New South Wales).

The '1000 Word Little Language' resource was produced by the English Language Institute at Victoria University. While teaching at Northcote College, Mary Matthew developed the examples and exercises, particularly with the group of Karen students from Burma/Myanmar in mind.

List 1

List 2


Professional readings

  • Lexical exploitation of texts: Explains why students need to be trained to notice and learn chunks, rather than just individual words (British Council).
  • Vocabulary and autonomy: Activities to build students' abilities to explore, store and use vocabulary (British Council).

Published on: 09 Jan 2018