The Word Identification
Strategy
This strategy will help you dissect
long words that you encounter when
you’re reading.
Most of you will learn to use this
strategy in this room within 3-4 weeks.
 This is another life-long strategy.
 It will also help you with comprehension
and reading fluency, since you will learn
how to dissect the longer words that
make reading difficult.
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Does anyone know what
“dissect” mean?
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It means to divide
something or cut
something into
several parts.
You’ll be cutting
the words up into
short pieces that
you can easily
pronounce.
Then you can
easily pronounce
the entire word.
If you are able to pronounce any word you
encounter, you will be more likely to
understand and more able to discuss what
you read.
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How will this help you in
classes such as English,
Science, and Social
Studies?
That’s right! You’ll be
better able to answer
questions in class and in
your reading
assignments.
You can use the Word Identification
Strategy any time you are reading
something and come upon a long word
you’ve never seen before.
 Can
you think of
situations when this
happens?
Now Let’s go over the steps
of the Word Identification
Strategy.
 Keep your cue
cards in your
folder, so you
will be able to
refer to them
whenever you
need them.
Step 1: Discover the
context
Play: Context Clue
Song!!
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The context is the
meaning of the other
words that surround
the difficult word.
Sometimes, if you
know the meaning of
the words
surrounding a
difficult word, you
can guess what the
word is.
What do you usually do when
you come to a difficult word?
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That’s right! You
usually stop to try to
figure it out. Well,
this requires you to
do just the opposite;
you need to skip the
difficult word and
keep reading to
finish the sentence
in which it occurs.
Why would reading the whole
sentence help you figure out a
word?
It helps you to think about the meaning
of the sentence and to try to guess the
best word that will fit in place of the
difficult word.
 If you can’t think of a word that
matches, you need to go to step 2...
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Direct definition context clues are words that say,
“Stop - don’t touch that dictionary. The definition of the
word you don’t know is right here in the text!"
EXAMPLES:
are many theories, or ideas, about
what made the Ice Ages happen.
 There
 In
this sentence the word “ideas” tells us that
theories are different thoughts people have
about something.
 After a time, glaciers, or slowly moving
rivers of ice, formed over many parts of
the Earth.
 In
this sentence the words “slowly moving
rivers of ice” tell us what glaciers are.
Synonym context clues are words
around a difficult word that mean the
same or nearly the same as the word.
EXAMPLES:

After seeing the picture of the starving children,
we felt compassion or pity for their suffering.
In this sentence the word “pity” tells us that
compassion means to have understanding for.
 Mary admonished her students and they knew
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they were in hot water for their actions.

In this sentence the words “in hot water” tell us that
admonished means cautioned or scolded.
Antonym context clues are words around a
difficult word that mean the opposite or nearly
the opposite as the word.
EXAMPLE:
was reluctant to take the job of
captain of the team. He was afraid that
the time it would take would hurt his
grades. On the other hand, Billy was
eager for the chance to be the team
captain.
 Joe
 In
this sentence the words “on the other hand”
and “eager” tell us that Billy feels the opposite
of Joe, therefore, reluctant means uncertain
or cautious.
Let’s Look for clues in this Activity!
Your friend Ryan has moved to a new country and is learning a new
language. Read what he wrote in his diary and see if you can figure
out the meaning to the underlined words.
Dear Diary,
I overslept this morning. I had to eat my bowl of poof-poofs
very quickly, and I almost missed the tramzam. When I got to
school, I realized I had forgotten my zilgping . Luckily, Ms. Jutzi is
very zoosh, and told me I could bring it tomorrow.
After school, some friends and I played plingming. It’s a new
game I am learning. We scored 7 points and they only scored 5
points, so we were the zoiters!
Dad says that next weekend we’re going to the fladder . I can’t
wait! I love to swim and play in the sand. I hope I don’t get a
sunburn though.
Well, I better go to bed soon. I don’t want to wake up late
again and miss my tramzam!
Until tomorrow,
Ryan
In pairs, write the words
with possible meanings.
And the answers are!
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What could the word poof-poofs mean?
► The sentences tell me it is something that can be eaten. I know that it is a
breakfast food because Ryan said it was morning. I also know that it goes in a
bowl. What do you think it is?
► The most logical guess would be a type of cereal.
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What could the word tramzam mean?
► The sentences tell me that Ryan was going to school and he almost missed his
tramzam. What do you think it is?
► The most logical guess would be a school bus.
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What could the word zilgping mean?
► The sentences tell me that it is something Ryan needed at school. I also know
that it is ok if he brings it tomorrow. What do you think it is?
► The most logical guess would be Ryan’s homework.
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What could the word zoosh mean?
► The sentences tell me that a person can act this way and that Ms. Jutzi is being
kind and allowing Ryan to bring his homework the next day. What do you think it
is?
► The most logical guess would be friendly or understanding.
The rest are!
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What could the word plingming mean?
►The sentences tell me it is a game Ryan and his friends play
against each other and that points can be scored. What do
you think it is?
►The most logical guess would be a sport such as basketball
or soccer.
What could the word zoiters mean?
►The sentences tell me that Ryan’s team scored 7 points
while the other team scored less points. What do you think
it is?
►The most logical guess would be that it means winners.
What could the word fladder mean?
►The sentences tell me that Ryan’s dad said he could go
there and when he gets there they will swim and play in the
sand. Ryan also mentions not wanting a sunburn. What do
you think it is?
►The most logical guess would be a lake or a beach.
Let’s examine what context is…
Practice #1-2
 Context Clues Exercise

Word Clue Activity
Practice #3-4
 TV Activity
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English Zone Activity
Context Clues Pretest
http://www.shsu.edu/~txcae/Powerpoints/prepostest/contextcl
ues1pretest.html
Context Clues Posttest
http://www.shsu.edu/~txcae/Powerpoints/prepostest/cluesdefi
nepostest.html
More Activities for Later…

Print and Do Worksheet
– http://www.woodland.k12.mo.us/faculty/rgarner/Reading/Using
%20Context%20Clues_riddles.doc

Context Clues Practice Sheets
– http://www.manatee.k12.fl.us/sites/elementary/palmasola/ccpra
c1.htm
– http://www.manatee.k12.fl.us/sites/elementary/palmasola/ccpra
c2.htm
– http://www.manatee.k12.fl.us/sites/elementary/palmasola/rcdc2
cc.htm
– http://www.manatee.k12.fl.us/sites/elementary/palmasola/rcdc2
cc.htm
Prefixes & Suffixes
Prefix & Suffix Rap Song
Prefix Suffix Video Clip
Step 2: Isolate the prefix
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A prefix consists of one
or more letters at the
beginning of a word.
There are 56 you will
learn.
To isolate the prefix, you
look at the beginning of
the word to see if the
initial letters match any
of the prefixes you know.
Then isolate it by making
a bar.
There are 56 prefixes! You have a cue card!
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abacadAnteAntiAp- (up)
AtAutoBeBiCircumColComCon-
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DeDemDiDisDysEmEnEpiExForForeHydroHyper-
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InInterIntroLocoMisMonoMultiNonObOf- (off)
Op- (up)
ParaPer-
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PostPreProReRetroSeSubSuperSurTeleTransTriUltra-
Before you go on to step
3...
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Some of the prefixes
are included in other
prefixes.
For example,”de” is
included in “dem”.
That means you have
to be very careful
when you see a word
starting with “de”
What are some other
prefixes on the list
that are contained in
other prefixes?
Also...
 Look
for
compound
prefixes.
 For example,
“pro-se-cute”
 Make two
marks to
isolate each
prefix.
Let’s try a practice!

Prefix Matching
Step 3: Separate the suffix
A
suffix is group of letters
that comes at the end of a
word.
 Let’s look at the list.
 Make sure you find each
complete suffix and mark it.
 Look for compound suffixes
too.
Some words include two or more
suffixes or a “compound suffix”.
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What are the two
suffixes in this
word?
Helplessness
That’s right!
“less” and “ness”
Separate them
both
Suffix List
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-able
-age
-al
-ance
-ar
-ant
-ate
-ble
-cy
-ed
-en
-ence
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-ent
-er
-es
-est
-ey
-ful
-gamy
-gon
-hood
-ial
-ible
-ic
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-ice (is)
-ing
-ion
-ish
-ism
-ist
-ite (it)
-ity
-ive (iv)
-ize (eyes)
-less
-logy
-ly
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-man
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-ment
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-ness
-or
-ous
-ry
-ship
-sion
-tion
-tive
-ty
-ual
-ure
-ward
-y
Let’s Practice!
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Suffix Practice
To review this third step, you
look at the end of the word to
see if the last letters match
any of the suffixes you know.
 Then
go to step 4!
Step 4: Say the stem
 The
stem of a word
is left after you take
away the prefix and
the suffix.
 If there is no prefix
or suffix then the
whole word is the
stem.
Let’s try an example...
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Unfairly
What is the prefix?
What is the suffix?
What is the stem?
If you can say the
stem you need to go
to step 5.
Step 5: Examine the stem
 When
you examine
the stem, you need to
dissect it into easy-topronounce parts.
 You’ll need to apply
the Rules of Twos
and Threes.
Let’s practice!
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Fish tank
The Rule of Twos and
Threes is:
V-2
C-3
• Vowel
• Divide after
2
• Consonant
• Divide after
3
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If a stem begins
with a vowel,
separate the first
two letters to
pronounce
If the stem begins
with a consonant,
separate the first
three letters to
pronounce.
Let’s look at an example...
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Try to remember!
V-2
C-3
Al/ter-nat/or
 Keep applying the
rules until you’re done
with the stem.
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Step 6: Check with someone
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It is only used after
you’ve tried the first
five steps and you
still can’t figure out
how to pronounce
the word.
Can you tell me
what the word is?
Who would be a
good person to ask?
Step 7: Try the dictionary
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It is to be used
when you can’t
find someone to
ask or when the
people you ask
don’t know the
word either.
Look it up in the
dictionary and
check the
pronunciation
guide that usually
follows the word.
Online Dictionaries help too!
Some have audio too!
Merriam Webster
 Dictionary.com
 Webster's Dictionary
 Yahoo Kids Dictionary
 Word Central
 MSN Encarta
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Now you know what D-IS-S-E-C-T means!!
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The Word Identification Strategy