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Identify the Missing Word in a Scrambled Set

In this worksheet, students will create new words by replacing sets of letters within words with an alternative or by changing the order of the letters already present. It will develop their problem solving and sequencing skills.

'Identify the Missing Word in a Scrambled Set' worksheet

Key stage:  KS 2

Curriculum topic:   Verbal Reasoning

Curriculum subtopic:   Word Scrambles

Difficulty level:  

Worksheet Overview

QUESTION 1 of 10

When people get tired they sometimes say their brains are scrambled!

 

Well, there is no room for that here, as we need your best brainpower to unscramble the following puzzle.

Challenge accepted, word detective?

 

 

 

Below are some pairs of words.

They each follow a special pattern and we need to find out what each pattern is!

 

You need to think about what the pattern is between the first two pairs, and then complete the third pair in the same way.

 

 


Let’s look at an example to bring this to life.

 

What could be the special pattern below?

 

(appear, pears)          (return, turns)          (beside, ____ )            

 

    A green pear

 

Did you notice that the second word has had the first two letters removed and an -s added at the end?

 

This is our special pattern and we need to do the same to the word beside to find the missing word.

 

If we remove the be, we are left with side and then we need to add an s to get sides.

This makes our missing word SIDES.

 

So the complete set of words would be:

(appear, pears)          (return, turns)          (beside, sides)

 

 

 


Let's investigate another example now. 

 

Look at these word pairs below.

Can you work out the special pattern to figure out which word comes next?

 

(scares, care)          (brains, rain)          (cabled, ____ )

 

Did you notice that the first and last letters are being removed each time?

 

We need to do the same for cabled and this gives us the answer ABLE.

 

So the complete set of words would be:

(scares, care)     (brains, rain)       (cabled, able)        

 

    A little girl in the rain in a yellow raincoat

 

Pssstt!! Here’s a handy hint to help you reach superstar status:

Remember to check if any letters have been added or removed from the word.
 

In this activity, you will need to be a word detective and work out the missing word in a pair.

 

Let’s get started!

Are you ready for a challenge, word scrambler?

 

Here are two groups of words:

 

[spear, pears]

[spot, ____ ]

 

Set of six, antique-looking spears

 

The second word is missing in one of the groups of words.

 

Following the same pattern as the first pair, find the missing word.

Let's try another one now.

 

Here are two new groups of words:

 

[miles, smile]

[hears, ____ ]

 

A child's left ear

 

The second word is missing in one of the groups of words.

 

Following the same pattern as the first pair, find the missing word.

Investigate the new set of suspects below:

 

[size, sizable]

[love, ____ ]

 

Brushed outline of a red heart

 

The second word is missing in one of the groups of words. 

 

Following the same pattern as the first group, find the missing word.

Review the new word sets below:

 

[iced, dice]

[mite, ____ ]

 

Single white dice, showing number one

 

The second word is missing in one of the groups of words.

 

Following the same pattern as the first pair of words, find the missing word. 

You're getting there, word detective!

 

Here are two new word pairs:

 

[mighty, mightily]

[cheeky, ____ ]

 

The second word is missing in one of the groups of words.

 

Following the same pattern as the first pair, find the missing word.

Here's a new dastardly duo of words:

 

[ambition, ambitious]

[suspicion, ____ ]

 

The second word is missing in one of the groups of words.

 

Following the same pattern as the first pair, find the missing word.

Below are some suspicious new word sets: 

 

[untie, ties]

[unroll, ____ ]

 

The second word is missing in one of the groups of words.

 

Following the same pattern as the first two pairs, find the missing word.  

Look at these new word pairings: 

 

[screw, scream]

[drew, ____ ]

 

A single, silver screw

 

The second word is missing in one of the groups of words.

 

Following the same pattern as the first pair, find the missing word.

Here are your penultimate groups of words:

 

[hastily, hasty]

[scruffily, ____ ]

 

The second word is missing in one of the groups of words.

 

Following the same pattern as the first two groups, find the missing word.

Here's your final case to crack detective: 

 

[beak, book]

[speak, ____ ]

 

Boy reading a large, blue book

 

The second word is missing in one of the groups.

 

Following the same pattern as the first pair of words, find the missing word.

  • Question 1

Are you ready for a challenge, word scrambler?

 

Here are two groups of words:

 

[spear, pears]

[spot, ____ ]

 

Set of six, antique-looking spears

 

The second word is missing in one of the groups of words.

 

Following the same pattern as the first pair, find the missing word.

CORRECT ANSWER
Pots
EDDIE SAYS
First challenge done, how did you get on? The second word in each group has had the first letter moved to the end to create the second words. The word still has the same number of letters in it, but the order of those letters has changed. Can you see what we mean? Let's try another now...
  • Question 2

Let's try another one now.

 

Here are two new groups of words:

 

[miles, smile]

[hears, ____ ]

 

A child's left ear

 

The second word is missing in one of the groups of words.

 

Following the same pattern as the first pair, find the missing word.

CORRECT ANSWER
Shear
EDDIE SAYS
The letters are moving about again here - try to keep track of them! The second word in each group has had its last letter moved to the front to create the second words. Did you spot that word detective? Remember that when you are completing these questions, the new word you create must be a real word, which makes sense. If it does not, then you don't have the right culprit!
  • Question 3

Investigate the new set of suspects below:

 

[size, sizable]

[love, ____ ]

 

Brushed outline of a red heart

 

The second word is missing in one of the groups of words. 

 

Following the same pattern as the first group, find the missing word.

CORRECT ANSWER
Lovable
EDDIE SAYS
Fantastic effort so far! The second word in each group has had the last letter removed and the suffix -able added. So we have changed two nouns into two adjectives in this case. Remember that the '-able' ending means to be capable of or fit for something So if someone is described as 'lovable', this means that they deserve love, which we all do, don't we?
  • Question 4

Review the new word sets below:

 

[iced, dice]

[mite, ____ ]

 

Single white dice, showing number one

 

The second word is missing in one of the groups of words.

 

Following the same pattern as the first pair of words, find the missing word. 

CORRECT ANSWER
Emit
EDDIE SAYS
The second word in each group has had its last letter moved to the start to create the second words. The number of letters in each word stays the same. Have you heard of the word 'emit' before? If not, then look up its meaning in the dictionary now and add this to your personal word log. You're doing well so far, word detective!
  • Question 5

You're getting there, word detective!

 

Here are two new word pairs:

 

[mighty, mightily]

[cheeky, ____ ]

 

The second word is missing in one of the groups of words.

 

Following the same pattern as the first pair, find the missing word.

CORRECT ANSWER
Cheekily
EDDIE SAYS
The second word in each group has had its last letter removed and replaced with the group of letters -ily. This change has converted two adjectives into two adverbs instead. You're halfway through these cases already detective; keep going!
  • Question 6

Here's a new dastardly duo of words:

 

[ambition, ambitious]

[suspicion, ____ ]

 

The second word is missing in one of the groups of words.

 

Following the same pattern as the first pair, find the missing word.

CORRECT ANSWER
Suspicious
EDDIE SAYS
How did you get on with this one? The second word in each group has had its last letter removed and replaced with the letters -us. In both cases, this has changed a noun into an adjective. Hopefully you are feeling AMBITIOUS in this activity, word wizard!
  • Question 7

Below are some suspicious new word sets: 

 

[untie, ties]

[unroll, ____ ]

 

The second word is missing in one of the groups of words.

 

Following the same pattern as the first two pairs, find the missing word.  

CORRECT ANSWER
Rolls
EDDIE SAYS
The second word in each group had the prefix un- removed and the letter s added at the end. You're on a ROLL too!
  • Question 8

Look at these new word pairings: 

 

[screw, scream]

[drew, ____ ]

 

A single, silver screw

 

The second word is missing in one of the groups of words.

 

Following the same pattern as the first pair, find the missing word.

CORRECT ANSWER
Dream
EDDIE SAYS
The second word in each group has had its last letter removed and the word ending -am added. All four of these words are nouns, but this change has resulted in creating a totally new word. Did you spot that detective?
  • Question 9

Here are your penultimate groups of words:

 

[hastily, hasty]

[scruffily, ____ ]

 

The second word is missing in one of the groups of words.

 

Following the same pattern as the first two groups, find the missing word.

CORRECT ANSWER
Scruffy
EDDIE SAYS
The second word in each group has had the word ending -ily removed and replaced with the letter y so that the words get shorter. This has changed two adverbs into two adjectives! Just one more mystery remains now detective; are you ready for your final challenge?
  • Question 10

Here's your final case to crack detective: 

 

[beak, book]

[speak, ____ ]

 

Boy reading a large, blue book

 

The second word is missing in one of the groups.

 

Following the same pattern as the first pair of words, find the missing word.

CORRECT ANSWER
Spook
EDDIE SAYS
The second word in each group has had the letters ea in the centre replaced with oo. This change has created two entirely new and different words. You can now create new words by replacing sets of letters within words with an alternative or by changing the order of the letters already present. Well done for completing this activity, word scrambler!
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