Assistive Technology Network

Core Vocabulary

Of the nearly 250,000 spoken words, only about 200 of these are used approximately 80% of the time. We refer to these words as core vocabulary. Core words are verbs, prepositions, pronouns, adjectives, articles or conjunctions and rarely nouns. When we teach using core vocabulary, we are teaching a small set of words that can be used across any setting for a variety of purposes and in a variety of activities. These core words are often taught first and used as a foundation upon which to build language.

One way to teach core vocabulary is to use a Core Word(s) of the Week approach. This helps teams to target specific vocabulary across all daily routines and activities.

Project Core provides teaching and implementation strategies that are excellent for supporting emerging communicators with significant disabilities.