Home Page


Friday 13th November, 2020

LC: To use the knowledge of root words to understand the meaning of words.

What is a root word? 

A root word is a basic word with no prefix or suffix added to it. 


For example 'take' is a root word. It means reach for and hold on to something.


We can add prefixes onto a root word in order to change its meaning.


re + take = retake     It means to take something again.

mis + take = mistake    It means to do an act that is wrong.

Here are some prefixes with their meanings:




Here is a model of using the knowledge of root words in order to understand the meaning of words that have prefixes added. 

 Prefix + Root Word


A biography is a story of person's life written by someone else. The 'auto' prefix means self. 

Autobiography must mean the story of a person's life written by that person.



       Social means someone or something enjoys being with others.         The 'anti' prefix means against. 

Antisocial means someone or something who is unwilling to meet in a normal or friendly way with other people.




Legible means when handwriting is clear enough to read.

The 'il' prefix means not.

Illegible means that handwriting is not clear enough to read.



Patient means being able to deal with problems or delays without becoming annoyed or worried.

The 'im' prefix means not.

Impatient means that you are not able to deal with problems or delays without becoming annoyed or worried.



Definite means something is clearly true or certain.

The 'in' prefix means not.

Indefinite means something is not clearly true or certain. 


Now it's your turn!

Find the meaning of words with prefixes by working out the meaning of the root word first. 


Click on the button below to begin.

Blended learning: Copy the words into your exercise book and explain the meaning of the root word before working out the meaning of the new word.