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Complete the Word Pair Using Patterns

In this worksheet, students will work out a pattern involving changing multiple letters and more than one rule at the same time, then apply this to find a missing word. It will develop their problem solving and sequencing skills.

'Complete the Word Pair Using Patterns' worksheet

Key stage:  KS 2

Year:  Year 5 11+ worksheets

Curriculum topic:   Verbal Reasoning

Curriculum subtopic:   Word Scrambles

Difficulty level:  

Worksheet Overview

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


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

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 together now. 

What could be the special pattern below?


(extending, nets)          (attests, sets)          (cheaply, ____ )



If you look closely, you will notice that the second word is made up of the 5th, 4th and 3rd letters of the first word (in that order) and then an -s is added onto the end.

We need to do the same for the word cheaply.

This gives us pea, then add the -s and we get PEAS. YUM!


So our complete set of words would be:

(extending, nets)          (attests, sets)          (cheaply, peas)


A group of green peas



Let’s investigate another example now. 

Look at these word pairs.

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


(cabled, able)          (trains, rain)          (smiles, ____ )                      


Smiling jam biscuit


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

We need to do the same for smiles and this gives us the answer MILE.


edplace 11+ detective


Top Tip: Remember to check if any letter has 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!

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