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Recognise Homonyms

In this worksheet, students will find the word that matches all of its explanatory definitions, the word will be a homonym. This will build students’ vocabulary and comprehension skills.

'Recognise Homonyms' worksheet

Key stage:  KS 2

Curriculum topic:   Verbal Reasoning

Curriculum subtopic:   Multiple Meanings

Difficulty level:  

Worksheet Overview

QUESTION 1 of 10

Welcome word detective! You’re just in time to help us with the latest puzzle, what a stroke of luck!

 

What do you notice about the word rock in the two sentences below?

Sally needs to gently rock the baby’s cot.

Jack picked up a rock from the ground.

 

We’ll give you a clue: the word rock means something completely different in each sentence!

 

Some words are spelled the same but have more than one meaning. We call these homonyms.

 

For example: rock could be a swaying movement or a hard piece of the ground.

 

      


 

Below are some different meanings for a word which is spelled the same (a homonym). 

To look at someone.

An item used to tell the time.

 

Which word do these sentences define?

a) jump

b) watch

c) hand

d) cold

The answer is watch because it matches both of the meanings!


Let’s try another.

The sound a dog makes.

The outer part of a tree trunk.

 

Which word do these sentences define?

a) yap

b) leaf

c) bark

d) ground

 

The answer is bark as it matches both of the meanings! 

 

           


 

In this activity, you will need to be a homonym hunter and match words to their meanings.

Pssst! Here’s a handy hint to help you reach superstar status: you may want to use a dictionary for any words you find tricky. You can then write them down on a piece of paper and start your own collection of new words!

 

 

Now it's over to you!

Great start, word detective! Keep it up.

 

Select one of the words below, which matches with both of these definitions.

A type of flower.

To travel upwards.

 

Lift

Rose

Lily

Tulip

Rise

Are you ready for another activity Word Detective? Let's go!

 

True or false? Select the correct reason too.

In the sentence below, pet means to touch the puppy.

 

I couldn't wait to gently pet the tiny puppy.

 

 

Lift

Rose

Lily

Tulip

Rise

Which of the words below have multiple meanings?

 

If you need a hint, there are two homonyms to spot!

 

Match

Flame

Carpet

Shirt

Tie

Well can mean to feel healthy and content.

 

Which of the other two definitions below also match with the word well?

 

To need to do better at something

Another meaning of very

To complete something to a high standard

An underground source of water

A leak that could cause a flood

Select one of the words below, which matches with both of the following definitions.

 

Something falls out of your hands to the floor.

A single tear, or bead of water.

 

Release

Place

Drop

Dribble

You're over halfway through this activity, word detective!

 

Select the most likely definition of the homonym trip next to each sentence.

 

Choose from the definitions below: 

Journey

Fall

 

    

 JourneyFall
Be careful not to trip over the curb
It's the school trip tomorrow
If you see anyone trip then help them up
My favourite trip was to the beach

Select the correct definitions for ruler below.

 

Hint - there are two to spot!

 

Something that measures weight

Something that measures length

Something that measures time

A person who talks a lot

A person in power

Spring is the season in the year that comes after winter and is before summer.

 

Which of the two alternative definitions below also match with the word spring?

To jump up suddenly

To run as fast as you can

A place where water bubbles up from underground

A place which is flooded

A trough that animals can drink from

You're so close to the end now. Keep up the fantastic focus!

 

In the sentence below, select the meaning of band.

 

I put a blue band around the end of my recorder so I wouldn't muddle it up with anyone else's.

 

The person is not allowed to share their recorder

The person is part of a music group

The person is using a loop of material to mark and identify their recorder

The person performs in a music group which plays the blues

Select one of the words below, which matches with both of the following definitions.

 

A symbol used in writing to represent a sound.

A written way of passing on a message.

 

Words

Alphabet

Email

Letter

Envelope

  • Question 1

Great start, word detective! Keep it up.

 

Select one of the words below, which matches with both of these definitions.

A type of flower.

To travel upwards.

 

CORRECT ANSWER
Rose
EDDIE SAYS
The red flower in the picture gives us a good clue here. You might have spotted straight away that it's a rose. This also fits with our second clue, as the past tense of rise (which means to go up) is rose. We've cracked it!
  • Question 2

Are you ready for another activity Word Detective? Let's go!

 

True or false? Select the correct reason too.

In the sentence below, pet means to touch the puppy.

 

I couldn't wait to gently pet the tiny puppy.

 

 

CORRECT ANSWER
EDDIE SAYS
This is a little tricky because we often think of a puppy as being someone's pet, which means that the puppy belongs to, and is cared for by, its owner. In this case though, pet is being used as a verb. The person can't wait to stroke the puppy, which is an action or something you do.
  • Question 3

Which of the words below have multiple meanings?

 

If you need a hint, there are two homonyms to spot!

 

CORRECT ANSWER
Match
Tie
EDDIE SAYS
How did you get on? The first option, match, could be a game, as in a sports match. The other meaning is very different. If you have ever lit a candle, you might have used a match, which is a small wooden stick that is struck against a rough surface to make a small flame. The second homonym is tie. That can be a verb, as in the action of tying a rope, but it can also be a noun. If someone is dressing smartly, they might wear a tie around their neck. It gets its name from the fact it's tied into a smart knot, so it links closely to the verb! Try not to get muddled.
  • Question 4

Well can mean to feel healthy and content.

 

Which of the other two definitions below also match with the word well?

 

CORRECT ANSWER
To complete something to a high standard
An underground source of water
EDDIE SAYS
Watch out word detective! The second option, where well means very, might look like a correct answer but actually it's an example where 'well' is used as slang. As that's incorrect English, it can't be used as our answer. Sometimes people say something is 'well good' meaning 'very good' but this is not a true meaning of well. So great job if you dodged that red herring! The correct answers mean to do something well, as in to make a good job of something. Well also can refer to an underground water source, which is shown in the picture above.
  • Question 5

Select one of the words below, which matches with both of the following definitions.

 

Something falls out of your hands to the floor.

A single tear, or bead of water.

 

CORRECT ANSWER
Drop
EDDIE SAYS
We can all think of a time when we've tried to carry too much at once, and some items have fallen to the floor. We say we've dropped them. Now think of a single droplet of water. We often shorten the word droplet to drop, giving us our homonym pair here.
  • Question 6

You're over halfway through this activity, word detective!

 

Select the most likely definition of the homonym trip next to each sentence.

 

Choose from the definitions below: 

Journey

Fall

 

    

CORRECT ANSWER
 JourneyFall
Be careful not to trip over the curb
It's the school trip tomorrow
If you see anyone trip then help them up
My favourite trip was to the beach
EDDIE SAYS
Here we can spot an example of having a verb and noun definition for a homonym pair! Great detective work if you picked up on that straight away. The verb of trip means to fall. You can recognise that we're being warned not to fall over the curb, and to help anyone up if they fall down in the first and third sentence. The other two sentences use trip to describe a journey. Looking at the final sentence, it would be very strange to talk about your favourite time that you fell over, after all.
  • Question 7

Select the correct definitions for ruler below.

 

Hint - there are two to spot!

 

CORRECT ANSWER
Something that measures length
A person in power
EDDIE SAYS
Do you have a ruler in your pencil case? If so, you might use it to draw straight lines, but also to measure the length of something, probably in centimetres. The other type of ruler is someone who rules, which means someone who is in charge of a group of people or an entire nation!
  • Question 8

Spring is the season in the year that comes after winter and is before summer.

 

Which of the two alternative definitions below also match with the word spring?

CORRECT ANSWER
To jump up suddenly
A place where water bubbles up from underground
EDDIE SAYS
How did you find these? The easier meaning to spot is to jump up suddenly. You might spring out of your seat if you were excited about something. Be careful with the second option; it refers to the word sprint, not spring! The different letter at the end of the word makes a huge difference. The trickier meaning used here is the underground source of water. You might have seen one if you've ever walked in a mountainous, rural area. Ask an adult if you're unsure.
  • Question 9

You're so close to the end now. Keep up the fantastic focus!

 

In the sentence below, select the meaning of band.

 

I put a blue band around the end of my recorder so I wouldn't muddle it up with anyone else's.

 

CORRECT ANSWER
The person is using a loop of material to mark and identify their recorder
EDDIE SAYS
Don't fall into the trap of going for the definition of band which refers to a group of musicians. Yes, it sounds like the person is part of an orchestra or music group, but when we think of what band in this context is actually talking about, it refers to a hairband or elastic band. By putting the blue band around her recorder, she is marking it as her own. Some people put bands around the handle of their suitcases so they can identify them at the airport. Can you think of any other examples of using bands like this?
  • Question 10

Select one of the words below, which matches with both of the following definitions.

 

A symbol used in writing to represent a sound.

A written way of passing on a message.

 

CORRECT ANSWER
Letter
EDDIE SAYS
How did you do with your last puzzle in this activity word detective? Both definitions relate to writing. Letters are the symbols which we use to construct words, and writing a letter is a way of communicating with someone else through writing. Great investigating, you're mission here is complete! You can have developed your skill of identifying relevant homonyms using given sentences and phrases. If you're feeling super confident why not attempt another, more challenging, activity?
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