Tag Archives: context clues

Fathom (vi/vt)

Alright, here is a context clues worksheet on the verb fathom, which is used both intransitively and transitively.

Inasmuch as this can mean “to penetrate and come to understand,” it is a learning word students probably ought to know and be able to use.

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Luminary (n)

With Women’s History Month 2021 now past for another year, I’ll spend the month of April posting the usual melange of material from the warehouse here at Mark’s Text Terminal. May is Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, so you’ll find a daily post of related documents and quotes here throughout the month.

For today, here is a context clues worksheet on the noun luminary. It’s a common enough word in English that it’s worth teaching to students. Don’t forget that the Latin roots lumin and lumen (light, shine, torch, lamp, heavenly body) are richly productive in English, including several key scientific terms. In fact, making that link may be the the best use to which this worksheet could be put.

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Approbation (n)

Here is a context clues worksheet on the noun approbation.  It means “an act of approving formally or officially: COMMENDATION, PRAISE” and has an adjectival form in approbatory.

Approbation is not exactly the most commonly used word in the English language. That may in fact be its strength in using this document to teach inferring from context as a reading strategy. When students don’t know a word this obscure, in my experience, they derive satisfaction in the act of defining it from the context in which it is embedded. Will your students begin expressing to their friends and siblings about their approbation and disapprobation (which means, unsurprisingly, “the act or state of disapproving : the state of being disapproved : CONDEMNATION”) for menu choices, girlfriends or boyfriends, or musical preferences? Probably not. But they will have an opportunity to practice an important, indeed key, reading comprehension strategy by defining this word from the context in which it appears.

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Achieve (vi/vt)

Here is a context clues worksheet on the verb achieve, which is used both intransitively and transitively.

More importantly, perhaps, it is very commonly used among educators and with our students;  we use it, albeit in adjectival form, in terms of art like “achievement gap.” If we’re going to use this word, which can be in some cases a value judgement, then we owe it to our kids to help them understand it in both its denotative and connotative senses. Moreover, I would argue, we need to help students understand that achieve and achievement are words that can be and often are used in highly subjective–and again, judgemental–ways.

So we might want to ask critical questions, and by extension help students gain an understanding of asking such questions, like: “What is achievement?” “Who defines achievement?” “How do people know when they achieve something?” “Why is achieving things important?” “According to whom?” “How does one know when one has achieved something?” You get the picture.

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Accede (vi)

Here is a context clues worksheet on the verb accede. It’s used only intransitively, and relatively rarely, in my experience, despite its stemming from a solid Latin root at the base of many other commonly used words in English. It means “to become a party (as to an agreement),” “to express approval or give consent, give in to a request or demand.” and “to enter upon an office or position.” A near synonym is assent–another intransitive verb meaning “to agree to something esp. after thoughtful consideration.”

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

The Weekly Text, December 18, 2020: Four Context Clues Worksheets on Enthusiasm (n), Enthusiast (n), Enthuse (vi/vt), and Enthusiastic (adj)

This week’s Text, which will be the last for this benighted year, is four context clues worksheets on the nouns enthusiasm and enthusiast, the verb enthuse, and the adjective enthusiastic. If you want to make a point about words as they appear across the parts of speech–known in linguistics by the term of art morphology–these might help.

If you find typos in these documents, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Vilify (vt)

Here is a context clues worksheet on the verb vilify. It’s used only transitively, so don’t forget your direct object: you must vilify someone. It means “to lower in estimation or importance” and “to utter slanderous and abusive statements against.” and “defame.” One of its synonyms is the transitive verb “malign,” which can also be used as an adjective. We’ve had four years of the daily exercise of the action this verb describes, so it is worth knowing when it shows up in any public discourse. 

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Rescind (vt)

Here is a context clues worksheet on the verb rescind. It’s only used transitively, so do not forget your direct object; you, or whoever or whatever the subject of your sentence is, must rescind something.

This is a very commonly used word in English, so students probably ought to know it. Perhaps seniors could learn it in the context of their admission offer to college, which could be rescinded in the event that those students succumb to the dread affliction of “senioritis.”

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Lucrative (adj)

On this Monday morning, it’s the Word of the Day at Merriam-Webster; to my surprise, having worked for ten years in an economic-and-finance-themed high school in Lower Manhattan, I somehow hadn’t written a context clues on the adjective lucrative. By any standard, this is a very commonly used word in the the English language, thus one students should know by the time they leave high school.

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

Distend (vi/vt)

It’s the Word of the Day at Merriam-Webster, so here is a context clues worksheet on the verb distend. One uses it both intransitively and transitively. It means, in the context I’ve written for it, “to enlarge from internal pressure : SWELL.” I very nearly let it pass by, but it is a relatively commonly used word in English.

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.