"Development of vocabulary is crucial to any experience involving language. Because of the high incidence of unfamiliar vocabulary in mathematics, teaching unknown words becomes central to mathematics literacy." Monroe and Orme (2002)
Math vocabulary is presented differently than vocabulary presented in other instructional settings. In the world of math, vocabulary is not presented as formal definitions and examples. Student mastery of math vocabulary is evidenced by the ability to construct an understanding around a concept, as opposed to learning the formal definition. Because math is about a process, a student needs to be able to connect the process to math terms. Strategies used when reading, such as decoding words and using contextual evidence, can also support the learning of mathematical vocabulary.