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A root word is the basic form of a word without a prefix or suffix. Every word has or is a root word. Compound words have two roots. The root word provides the basic meaning of a word. In English, root words have origins from a variety of languages, such as Latin or French. Prefixes (parts of a word that come at the beginning) and suffixes (parts of the word that come at the end) are added to a root to change the meaning and word form. It  useful to learn the meanings of common roots in English as well as the meanings of common prefixes and suffixes.

For this month's writing challenge, we're going to work together to learn and teach each other lots of English words through root words.

Your Task

1. Choose an English root word. Find lists of common root words here, here, and here. After you choose a root, discover at least five different words that have this root. You can search online for "words that have insert your root word". 

2. Open a new blog post. Use the title "Writing Challenge: Root Words".

3. Identify your chosen root word and give a definition of it. 

4. Write a paragraph using as many different words with this root as you can. The topic of your paragraph is your choice. Use bold font to highlight all of the words in your paragraph that have this root. 

5. Publish your post and add a link to it in the comments below. Be sure to comment on other Root Word posts that you see in the MyEC Blog Feed.


My Example

Root word ~  spec: see or look at  

"Be Nice, Clear Your Ice" 

There is one aspect of winter that drives me crazy! Those of you who know that I live in Canada might suspect that it's the cold that bothers me. That is true in some respects. However, with the cold comes the snow. Snow can be spectacular if you are a child or a ski enthusiast. From a parent's perspective, it can be dangerous! My children have to walk to and from school on the icy sidewalks every day. Many people do not bother to clear the snow and ice outside of their homes. I suspect these people are too lazy or too busy. While I respect the fact that some homeowners may be too old or ill to clear the snow and ice, they should pay someone in the community to do this service for them if they want to remain homeowners. The city bylaw clearly specifies that all sidewalks must be cleared by homeowners within 12 hours of a snowstorm. Upon speculation, the next time I see a mother struggling to push a stroller past a driveway that hasn't been cleared, I will call the city and report the disrespectful homeowner.

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Comment by Tara Benwell on December 3, 2013 at 16:19

Here is Mishaikh's post on the prefix "poly"

Comment by Tara Benwell on December 3, 2013 at 15:48

Thanks for the fantastic posts so far! Here is Omar's post.

Comment by Ashwini krishnan on December 2, 2013 at 5:41

Hi Tara,

Here is the link for Root Words.

Thank You



Comment by Daniel on November 29, 2013 at 21:01

 Hello teacher Tara, nice activity proposal for all learners. We can learn through it some root words and their compound ones by using them in our writings. By the way, the link for my activity is here:

 Congratulations for your always creative mind. See you!

Comment by Expector Smith on November 28, 2013 at 23:11

The root "spec" is my favorite root, too.

It's one of the effective ways to broaden our vocabulary.

Comment by _Bia(noprvtplz) on November 28, 2013 at 16:30

too..either  (sorry)

Comment by _Bia(noprvtplz) on November 28, 2013 at 16:29

i liked your blog ..very useful and the content of the text is very interesting too, in my town ice is not cleared too, the town authorities worry only for the main road, the central avenue which is used by them to go to work to the city council and then back home, maybe thats why its cleaned from ice or litter whenever we have visitors or guests too.....and i learned some new words too thank you Tara jan!

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