elcome to How Do You Mean? This resource helps students think about how the English language works and how words mean.

This resource can be used with a whole class, but contains concepts and extension activities that can challenge the most able students.

The insights from this resource should give students a broader background for language (an understanding of the concepts of morphology and shifting semantics as well as the historical context of language change) which should increase their power to use and interpret words more creatively and intelligently.

You can:

  • play with our games and make up new words and definitions
  • think about what different words mean to you and others and what they meant in the past
  • think about why words are spelt the way they are
  • look at some old dictionaries from the British Library and find out how words used to be described and how English has changed
  • watch the video and see what other students learned and thought when they came to a previous event at the British Museum.

Check the scheme of work for more detail on how to use this resource and the links to the curriculum areas that it supports.