Tag Archives: context clues

Codify (vt)

Here is a context clues worksheet on the verb codify, which is only used transitively, so don’t forget your direct object–you must codify something.

Merriam-Webster defines this verb quite simply: “to reduce to a code.” I wrote this worksheet because this word kept showing up in social studies texts in the years in which I was teaching global studies. What students will need to understand (and this is an opportunity to awaken prior knowledge and put it to use, particularly if your global studies curriculum includes, as it should, material on the Code of Hammurabi) is that the word code defines “a systematic statement of a body of laws especially: one given statutory force” and “a system of principles or rules.” Put another way, the verb codify connotes “to make into law.”

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.

Cartel (n)

Here’s one more post before I take a vacation from this blog for a few days, to wit, a context clues worksheet on the noun cartel. It’s a word that shows up in social studies classes, particularly those United States history classes that deal with 1970s global oil markets and their effect on the American economy.

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.

Annotation (n)

Here is a context clues worksheet on the noun annotation; I don’t know why I didn’t post it at the same time as this one on the verb annotate, which is used both intransitively and transitively.

I wrote these because I worked in a school in which students were assigned work compiling annotated bibliographies without ever learning what it means, as an act or academic practice, to annotate. I hope these help.

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.

Insouciance (noun)

Here is a context clues worksheet on the noun insouciance. While it is an infrequently used word in the English language (it means “lighthearted unconcern,” incidentally), it does turn up occasionally, as does its adjective, insouciant, in common discourse from time to time. Both words have a rich etymology, originating, apparently, in the Latin verb sollicitare–“to agitate,” should you or your students be interested.

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.

Sober (adj), Sobriety (n)

Here are a pair of context clues worksheets on sober and sobriety, respectively an adjective and a noun.

In writing these, I sought to include both primary meanings of sober, i.e., where alcohol and intoxicants are concerned, “sparing in the use of food or drink,” “not addicted to intoxicating drink,” and “not drunk”; where an approach to life and its vagaries are concerned, “marked by sedate or gravely or earnestly thoughtful character or demeanor,” “marked by temperance, moderation, or seriousness,” and “showing no excessive or extreme qualities of fancy, emotion, or prejudice”

The noun sobriety simply means “the quality or state of being sober.” In the worksheet for this word, then, I also attempted to create prose that students could use to infer the above meanings of sober. As I prepared these for publication, I tried to remember why I wrote them, but couldn’t. So I don’t know if I intended to use them together in one sitting, or to use them discretely over a week’s time, and use sobriety to gauge understanding and retention of the previously used worksheet for sober.

In any case, they’re yours now if you want them, so you can use them as you will.

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.

The Weekly Text, April 23, 2021: A Lesson Plan on the Latin Word Root Mill-, Milli-

This week’s Text is a lesson plan on the lesson plan on the Latin word root, which mean, respectively, thousand and thousandth. I open this lesson with this worksheet on the noun century.  Here is the scaffolded worksheet that is the primary work of this lesson.

As you can see, these are very productive roots in English, yielding words like millennium and millipede. As I look at this lesson plan, I see that I intended to write two separate worksheets for these two roots. There are two separate listings for these roots,  but I don’t find, in the dictionary that informs this work, a separate word list for milli. In any case, these documents are, as the bulk of the material posted here, in Microsoft Word. So, it you wanted to add millimeter to the list of words to analyze and define, you can.

In any case, depending on the students you serve, there is plenty of room in this lesson for a freewheeling discussion on mill and milli, whether it is important to know both, and why.

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.

Itinerant (adj)

It must have popped up as a Word of the Day at Merriam-Webster at some point, so here is a context clues on the adjective itinerant.

This is, I think, probably a word educated people should know and be able to use. For high school students, it will connect well with the noun itinerary, which probably turns up in a variety of places like material about the Lewis and Clark expedition or a popular music group’s tour of the United States or, indeed, the world. Before automated digital mapping, I’ll hazard a guess that itinerary turned up in common usage more than it does now. Has itinerant suffered the same fate (if indeed itinerary has)? That’s an interesting question that could yield interesting answers to an interested student.

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.

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.