Base Words and Prefixes

2nd - 3rd

Once your second graders grasp base words and prefixes, challenge them with this visual word meaning activity. They watch you model it before engaging in guided practice. Use these word cards focused on the prefix re to help your scholars determine word meaning by splitting a word into a prefix and base word, covering up one and then the other. The cards are included here. Although this has a complete script, you can simply use it as an outline. The link to further practice has an unrelated objective, but the adaptation suggestions are good.

Resource Details

Instructional Design
Choral Response
30 mins

Getting to the Root of It

Young readers learn how to get at the root of new vocabulary with this fun language arts activity. Working in pairs, children begin by taking turns matching unknown vocabulary words to their Greek or Latin roots. When all the vocabulary cards are grouped according to their root words, learners record the results on a graphic organizer and determine the definitions of the new words. Include this activity as a center during language arts rotations and expand the vocabulary of elementary students in any grade level.

Vocabulary Building

A fabulous language arts lesson has readers focus on the vocabulary in the key words, expand and build new vocabulary, and practice three grammar concepts. They recognize key words as they relate to communicating at work. Pupils build additional vocabulary and practice grammar concepts in a contextualized environment.

Compound Word Trivia

Engage young learners in expanding their vocabulary with these fun games and activities. Children learn how compound words, root words, and affixes provide clues about the meaning of unfamiliar vocabulary. These six activities get progressively harder, offering opportunities for learners of skill levels to deepen their word analysis skills. Direct adult participation is required for some activities while others allow for collaborative learning, making these best suited for small group rotations across the elementary grade levels.

Multiple Meanings Game

Here is a simple activity that uses definition cards that match the appropriate words to their meaning. Pupils match the cards using vocabulary words from units of study. A very basic, but often useful, resource.

Math Words with Multiple Meanings

Students find the meanings of common math words. In this math word meaning lesson, the teacher begins by giving half of the class the English assignment to write a sentence with a product and the other half of the class receives the math assignment to write a sentence with a product, then the class analyzes how the assignments were completed. Students use VisualThesaurus to complete a worksheet with a number of words that have a math definition and another definition.

Prefix/Suffix Funnel

What goes in must come out; using the graphic organizer included here, scholars send root words through the prefix/suffix funnel to become new words. Choose an affix to start with (for example, -able), then model how the funnel works as you send base words in and get new words out. Ask scholars to give you root words they think of and send them through together. For each word, record the original affix-attached versions on the T-Chart. Have learners do this independently by either coming up with more root words for the same affix or starting fresh with a new one.

Prefix/Suffix and Root Word Connection Boxes

One of the best ways to learn about prefixes and suffixes is to come up with examples, and this graphic organizer helps scholars do just that. Print one out for each learner and project one for them to see. Choose either a root word, prefix, or suffix to put at the top, then have learners come up with other words with the same element. Start with an easy one like un- or human to get them going. Do a couple of these together before letting them try another few on their own.

Prefix/Suffix Grocery Bag

Go grocery shopping for prefixes and suffixes! After discussing the meaning of these terms scholars use these grocery bag templates to separate words into roots and affixes, writing them on each of the items in the bag. There are four bags here for you to print, however it isn't clear how you are to use them. Consider displaying words for scholars to split, letting them choose which ones they will do. Then, have them come up and complete some of the words they did on the board.

Take the Prefix Challenge!

Help your class develop useful decoding skills to tackle new vocabulary they encounter and, at the same time, broaden their repertoires for writing. Learners compete in teams to see who can create the largest number of words by combining a set of prefixes with a set of base words. They check their new creations with the Visual Thesaurus. Interesting warm-up activities are included to encourage studying words. 

Word-Form Recognition Fluency, Partner Practice

Students practice word recognition and fluency. In this reading fluency lesson, students are split up into pairs and use a set of word cards to drill each other on the words. Students use positive praise to encourage each other.

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