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Homonyms: Lesson for Kids

Instructor: Shelly Merrell

Shelly has a Master's of Education. Most recent professional experience is an educational diagnostician. Prior, she taught for 8 years.

Wave, tire, and well all have something in common. They are all homonyms. In today's lesson we will learn what is special about these words and how to find them.

What are Homonyms?

Did you see that bat?

When we read this question, we had to think, which bat is being referred to? Is it the animal bat or a baseball bat?

bat shadow

Both of these are bats!
baseball bat

Homonyms are words that are both spelled and pronounced the same, but have different meanings.

Examples

-Fall

Fall can mean the season where the leaves fall from the trees. Fall can also mean to fall down.

-Box

Box can mean a cardboard box to put items in, or when fighters box with boxing gloves.

-Club

Club can be a heavy stick used as a weapon. Club can also be a group of people with something in common, like a soccer club.

Let's Try It

When we are reading sentences, we have to use the context clues to find out which meaning a word may have. Context clues are hints the writer gives in the sentence.

Let's try it out.

-She came in second in the race!

Second can mean a small part of minute. Second can also mean after first. In the above sentence we have the context clue, or hint, of race. So, we know that she came in after first during the race. She came in second!

- Is it okay if I go to the park with Rachel? Yes, that is fine.

As a descriptive word, fine can mean an object of superior quality. Fine can also mean someone who is good looking. Fine even has a third meaning. It can mean to be acceptable. Now, let's look at the hints in the sentence. We know that she asked if she could go to the park and the response was 'it's fine.' So, we know that going to the park was acceptable, or fine. Being good looking or superior quality wouldn't make sense in this situation.

- He used the nail to hold the photo.

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