Semantic language is a group of language skills that help people understand the meaning of words, word phrases, and sentences. Part of semantic language is that people understand more complex describing words like adjectives and adverbs and how they help provide insight into a word's meaning. Important elements in semantic knowledge and the learning of language include the following:
- Basic definitions of words
- The connections and contexts in which words are used
- The identification of like words
Semantic language requires people not only to understand the basic definition of a word, but also to make life connections and understand the overall function of the word in context.
Semantic language also involves vocabulary skills. Identification of synonyms and antonyms is an important part of Semantic language. It also requires people to understand if the word is used in multiple contexts. Figurative language is also a part of semantic language.
Understanding semantic language is very important to a person's success. People must have a deep understanding of words, their meanings, and word meanings in different contexts. People who lack these skills are unable to communicate clearly both in their field of work, and also in their personal lives.
Semantic language skills are introduced to students early in life. Young children are exposed to semantic language skills while in the elementary school. Practice continues into intermediate and secondary schooling allowing students ample time to practice semantic language skills. Since full understanding of word meanings and usage depend on relating it to life experience, some students struggle with semantic language skills until they have more life experience to relate to.