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What the Teacher Needs to Know about Greek and Latin Roots
(Description – pp. 181-184, Word Lists – pp. 284-297)
Many words in the English language have come from Greek or Latin roots. The same
root is found in a variety of words, and if students know the meaning of the root, they are
often able to determine the meaning of a newly found word. Many of these words are
found in content areas, so students who have an understanding of the roots, their
meanings, and how they work have an advantage in their content classes.
Start by examining number related prefixes. Their meanings are often obvious, and
students have had experience working with many of the words that include these prefixes.
Examine two or three prefixes at a time, then have students contribute additional
examples of words containing these prefixes.
Students can create word webs to show the many different words that can be formed from
a single prefix. See Word Journeys p. 182 for an example of such a web.
Then move to studying roots, starting with Greek roots first. Their meanings are usually
more obvious for students than the Latin roots. Several sorts with Greek and Latin roots
are included; however, additional work with these words can be done by creating sorts
involving some of the other roots. See pp. 284-297 of Word Journeys for an extensive
list of words which have come to us from Greek and Latin roots. In addition pp. 183-184
of Word Journeys describes two activities students might do with these words – Create-aWord and word family trees.
Greek and Latin Roots Sort 1a
monarchy
bicentennial
triad
tricolor
trident
monograph
monologue
biped
bilingual
trimester
trillium
bivalve
biennial
monorail
monotone
monarchy
trident
bilingual
biennial
bicentennial
monograph
trimester
monorail
triad
monologue
trillium
monotone
tricolor
biped
bivalve
Greek and Latin Roots Sort 1a
mono
monarchy
monograph
monologue
monorail
monotone
bi
bicentennial
bilingual
biped
bivalve
biennial
Transfer Words: monastery, bimonthly, triangle
tri
triad
tricolor
trident
trillium
trimester
Greek and Latin Roots Sort 2a
pentadactyl
octagon
polychrome
decade
semiannual
semicolon
semifinal
decameter
polygon
October
octet
pentathlon
polynomial
polygraph
semisolid
pentadactyl
semiannual
polygon
polynomial
octagon
semicolon
October
polygraph
polychrome
semifinal
octet
semisolid
decade
decameter
pentathlon
Greek and Latin Roots Sort 2a
penta
pentadactyl
pentathlon
octa
octagon
October
octet
poly
polychrome
polygon
polynomial
polygraph
deca
decade
decameter
semi
semiannual
semicolon
semifinal
semisolid
Transfer Words: pentagon, octahedron, polyps, decagon, semiprecious
Greek and Latin Roots Sort 3a
reunion
quadrangle
multicolored multifaceted
bicentennial
centigrade
quadrilateral
uniform
union
unit
square
century
multimedia
multiple
universal
reunion
multifaceted
union
multimedia
quadrangle
centigrade
unit
multiple
bicentennial multicolored
quadrilateral uniform
square
century
universal
Greek and Latin Roots Sort 3a
uni
reunion
uniform
union
unit
universal
quad
quadrangle
quadrilateral
square
cent
bicentennial
centigrade
century
multi
multicolored
multifaceted
multimedia
multiple
Transfer Words: unicorn, quadrant, centimeter, multifamily
Greek and Latin Roots Sort 4a
bicycle
autocrat
antibiotic
biography
calligraphy
digraph
antifreeze
automobile
antiseptic
lithograph
cyclist
encyclopedia
tricycle
oceanography
telegraph
bicycle
calligraphy
antiseptic
tricycle
autocrat
digraph
lithograph
oceanography
antibiotic
antifreeze
cyclist
telegraph
biography
automobile
encyclopedia
Greek and Latin Roots Sort 4a
cycl
bicycle
cyclist
encyclopedia
tricycle
auto
autocrat
automobile
anti
antibiotic
antifreeze
antiseptic
graph
biography
calligraphy
digraph
lithograph
oceanography
telegraph
Transfer Words: motorcycle, automatic, antitrust, photograph
Greek and Latin Roots Sort 5a
audible
accredit
aspect
abdicate
dedicate
dictionary
conspicuous
incredible
audiology
audiovisual
introspection
respect
spectacle
spectrum
valedictorian
audible
dedicate
audiology
spectacle
accredit
dictionary
audiovisual
spectrum
aspect
abdicate
conspicuous incredible
introspection respect
valedictorian
Greek and Latin Roots Sort 5a
aud
audible
audiology
audiovisual
cred
accredit
incredible
spect
aspect
conspicuous
introspection
respect
spectacle
spectrum
dic
abdicate
dedicate
dictionary
valedictorian
Transfer Words: audience, credentials, perspective, dictate
Greek and Latin Roots Sort 6a
circumference
admission
abduct
differ
inference
emissary
intermittent
conduct
deduct
missionary
introduction
promise
suffer
conference
reproduce
circumference
inference
deduct
suffer
admission
emissary
missionary
conference
abduct
intermittent
introduction
reproduce
differ
conduct
promise
Greek and Latin Roots Sort 6a
fer
circumference
differ
inference
suffer
conference
miss/mit
admission
emissary
intermittent
missionary
promise
Transfer Words: transfer, omission, educate
duce/duct
abduct
conduct
deduct
introduction
reproduce