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A fun activity reinforces synonyms and builds vocabulary skills.
synonym, vocabulary, game, antonym, opposite, foreign language
Before the Lesson
This fun activity requires advance preparation of a deck of cards. You'll need one card for each student and one for yourself. The prep is simple:
You'll find two lists below, one for use with students in grades 2 to 4 and the other for use in grades 5 and up.
Now you're ready to play the game!
Mix up the cards and distribute them to students, one card per student -- don't forget one for yourself. Have students look at the blue word on the card they hold. Start the game by showing and calling out the red word on your card. The students must look at their cards to see who has the blue word that is a synonym for the word you call out. That student should call out the synonym.
For example, if you show and call out the word error, the student who is holding the blue word that is a synonym for error -- in this example, mistake -- must call out that word.
Then, the student holding the card on which was written the synonym for your card (mistake) flips over his or her card and reads the red word (drowsy) on the back. Students look at their cards to see if they hold the blue word that is a synonym for drowsy. The game continues until you have gone all the way through the deck of cards.
Variations on the Game
Sample Synonym Pairs Use a thesaurus to create a grade-appropriate list of synonyms.
You might use an online thesaurus. In addition, some versions of Microsoft Word have their own easy-to-use thesaurus. Simply click Tools in the menu bar, then chooseSpelling and Grammar, and Language.
I used a thesaurus to create the synonym lists below. The first list might be appropriate to use at grades 2-4.
|center, middle||damp, wet||hurry, rush|
|gaze, stare||hear, listen||lost, missing|
|lump, chunk||odd, strange||stop, halt|
|paw, foot||paste, glue||present, gift|
|quick, fast||get, receive||funny, silly|
|sad, unhappy||small, little||smile, grin|
|stay, wait||stream, creek||tow, pull|
|pick, choose||lid, cover||neighborhood, community|
|big, large||harm, hurt||fire, blaze|
|fight, battle||hate, dislike||crash, smash|
This list might be appropriate to use at grades 5 and up.
|disappear, vanish||caution, care||petty, unimportant|
|copy, duplicate||danger, hazard||distribute, dispense|
|divide, separate||hesitant, indecisive||inappropriate, improper|
|poison, toxin||ponder, contemplate||prison, penitentiary|
|substitute, replacement||sudden, unexpected||tough, rugged|
|weaken, undermine||veer, swerve||natural, organic|
|inspect, examine||insult, offend||clench, squeeze|
|unprotected, vulnerable||courageous, valiant||categorize, classify|
|mission, assignment||liberty, freedom||restriction, limitation|
|traditional, customary||exaggerate, magnify||alternative, option|
AssessmentStudents will correctly identify the synonym word pairs.
Lesson Plan Source
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