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Homonyms Activities & Games for Elementary School

Instructor: Maria Airth

Maria has a Doctorate of Education and over 15 years of experience teaching psychology and math related courses at the university level.

English has some strange rules. Homonyms are some of the strangest; same word, said the same way but means different things. How confusing! These games and activities are designed to keep your students engaged while they work with homonyms.

Homonyms

What does that word mean? No, not that meaning, the other one! Homonyms can be confusing to young students because they are the same word, spelled the same way, but they mean different things.

In this lesson, we'll explore activities and games that are designed to help students practice the difficult concept of a single word having more than one meaning. The activities are fun and engaging, and the games are active, getting your students up and moving. Each one can be adjusted with different homonyms to match the skill level of your students.

Active Games

These are games that will require space and the ability for your students to move.

Find Your Match

  • Materials: notecards
  • Preparation: On notecards, write definitions for homonyms. You will write one definition per card, but make sure that each card has a 'match' (another card with a definition that tracks to the same word). For example, you might write 'a color' on one card and 'feeling sad' on another; both meaning 'Blue'.
  • To Play: Hand out cards to your students (if you have an odd number of students, you will need to keep one card for yourself). Ask students to find their partner by mingling with each other and figuring out the homonyms represented by the definitions on the cards. As the pairs find each other, they should stand together. When all definitions have been matched, go around the room and allow each pair to give their two definitions and the one homonym that represents them.

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