ERIC Number: ED216326
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1981-Aug
Reference Count: 0
Frequency-Count of English Words Appearing in Books Read in Elementary Schools.
Sartain, Harry W.
To discover the truth about the extent of children's reading vocabularies, a project was undertaken at the Falk Laboratory School, University of Pittsburgh, to determine how many words first, second, and third grade children could recognize in print. A team of graduate students tabulated the words appearing in commonly used basal materials and in several library books that children read most often. This task resulted in a list of approximately 11,000 words. It was apparent, however, that a more complete list was needed for elementary school use. A new vocabulary word list, the Comprehensive Reading Vocabulary, itemized all of the words in the preprimers, primers, first grade readers, and second grade readers in nine commonly used reading series, as well as words from instructional and free-reading materials most frequently encountered by children in grades three, four, five, and six. When the computerized tabulation was completed, the total list consisted of 8,269,968 entries, of which 79,044 were different entries or "words." The first 10 words in the list in order of frequency include the 2 major articles, the most common conjunction in the English language, the 3 most common prepositions, 1 verb, and 3 pronouns. (The paper contains a list of the first 200 words classified according to their grammatical functions, as well as a list of the first 500 words classified according to their frequency.) (HOD)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the European Conference on Reading (2nd, Joensuu, Finland, August 2-5, 1981).