Synonyms Lesson Plan

Instructor: Dana Dance-Schissel

Dana teaches social sciences at the college level and English and psychology at the high school level. She has master's degrees in applied, clinical and community psychology.

This lesson plan outlines how to pair a quick interactive activity with a text lesson to solidify student understanding of synonyms. To take your instruction even further, use the supplementary activities and related lessons.

Learning Objectives:

Upon completion of this lesson, students will be able to:

  • define synonym
  • identify synonyms
  • choose appropriate synonyms for composition


30 minutes


  • A whiteboard or chalkboard
  • Dry erase markers or chalk
  • Notebook paper
  • Pens or pencils
  • Tablets, computers, or projector to access lesson

Curriculum Standards

  • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.W.6.3.D: Use precise words and phrases, relevant descriptive details, and sensory language to convey experiences and events.


  • Ask student to read the text lesson What is a Synonym? - Definition & Examples in its entirety.
  • As the students are reading, write the following words on the board:
    • FRIEND
    • MOTHER
    • FATHER
    • FAST
    • SLOW
    • HOUSE
    • FOOD
  • Now have students write three synonyms for each word on their notebook paper.
  • When the students have finished writing the synonyms, ask them to share the different to terms they came up with for 'FRIEND.' Write each synonym on the board, avoiding duplicates, until all of the synonyms for 'FRIEND' have been listed.
  • Go through this same process for each of the ten words, writing new synonyms on the board as they are shared.
  • Finally, ask students to complete the associated quiz on


  • Have students find synonyms for the words of their favorite song.
  • Ask students to compose a simple paragraph on what they ate for breakfast. Now have them use a thesaurus to replace common words with more unique synonyms.

Related Lessons

How to Use Context to Determine the Meaning of Words

What is Inference? - How to Infer Intended Meaning

Constructing Meaning with Context Clues, Prior Knowledge & Word Structure

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