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Unknown Words: Working Out Their Meanings

In this worksheet, students use context to infer the meaning of unfamiliar words.

'Unknown Words: Working Out Their Meanings' worksheet

Key stage:  KS 2

Curriculum topic:   Reading: Comprehension

Curriculum subtopic:   Check Understanding of Text

Difficulty level:  

Worksheet Overview

QUESTION 1 of 10

Sometimes when we are reading we come across new words that we don't understand.

 

 

There may be somebody around who we can ask, or we can use a dictionary, but we can also use context. This means looking at the rest of the sentence to see if it helps us understand the new word.

 

For example:

Jack was so hungry that he didn't leave a single particle of the cake on his plate.

 

You may not be familiar with the word particle, but from the context you can guess that it means a very small piece of something.

Read the sentence and choose the correct meaning of the word in bold.

 

Jack thought it was unjust that he wasn't allowed to wear his earring in school when all the girls were allowed to.

unkind

unfair

funny

Read the sentences and choose the correct meaning of the word in bold.

 

Olivia had a healthy diet. She ate lots of fruit and vegetables and seldom ate sweets.

often

sometimes

hardly ever

Read the sentences and choose the correct meaning of the word in bold.


The cottage was very picturesque. It was painted white with a red roof and had roses growing over its porch and colourful flowers in the garden.

pretty

small

ugly

Read the sentence and choose the correct meaning of the word in bold.

 

The vase was very fragile and it smashed when Julia accidently knocked it off the table.

pretty

easily broken

tall

Read the sentences and choose the correct meaning of the word in bold.

 

Jacob thought the clowns were fascinating. He couldn't take his eyes off them and was disappointed when the show finished.

very interesting

boring

ugly

Read the sentences and choose the correct meaning of the word in bold.

 

Rahul is an industrious boy. He always tries hard at school and hands his homework in on time.

lazy

hard working

tired

Read the sentence and choose the correct meaning of the word in bold.

 

Liam's mobile phone broke so he discarded it and bought a new one.

mended

threw away

painted

Read the sentence and choose the correct meaning of the word in bold.

 

Stephen lost his wallet but he was very fortunate because someone handed it in to the police.

clever

sad

lucky

Read the sentence and choose the correct meaning of the word in bold.

 

Jack was very remorseful after he broke his sister's doll so he mended it for her.

unkind

happy

sorry

Read the sentence and choose the correct meaning of the word in bold.

 

We were not sure whether Neela was being earnest when she said she wanted to be a footballer.

clever

serious

lazy

  • Question 1

Read the sentence and choose the correct meaning of the word in bold.

 

Jack thought it was unjust that he wasn't allowed to wear his earring in school when all the girls were allowed to.

CORRECT ANSWER
unfair
  • Question 2

Read the sentences and choose the correct meaning of the word in bold.

 

Olivia had a healthy diet. She ate lots of fruit and vegetables and seldom ate sweets.

CORRECT ANSWER
hardly ever
  • Question 3

Read the sentences and choose the correct meaning of the word in bold.


The cottage was very picturesque. It was painted white with a red roof and had roses growing over its porch and colourful flowers in the garden.

CORRECT ANSWER
pretty
  • Question 4

Read the sentence and choose the correct meaning of the word in bold.

 

The vase was very fragile and it smashed when Julia accidently knocked it off the table.

CORRECT ANSWER
easily broken
  • Question 5

Read the sentences and choose the correct meaning of the word in bold.

 

Jacob thought the clowns were fascinating. He couldn't take his eyes off them and was disappointed when the show finished.

CORRECT ANSWER
very interesting
  • Question 6

Read the sentences and choose the correct meaning of the word in bold.

 

Rahul is an industrious boy. He always tries hard at school and hands his homework in on time.

CORRECT ANSWER
hard working
  • Question 7

Read the sentence and choose the correct meaning of the word in bold.

 

Liam's mobile phone broke so he discarded it and bought a new one.

CORRECT ANSWER
threw away
  • Question 8

Read the sentence and choose the correct meaning of the word in bold.

 

Stephen lost his wallet but he was very fortunate because someone handed it in to the police.

CORRECT ANSWER
lucky
  • Question 9

Read the sentence and choose the correct meaning of the word in bold.

 

Jack was very remorseful after he broke his sister's doll so he mended it for her.

CORRECT ANSWER
sorry
  • Question 10

Read the sentence and choose the correct meaning of the word in bold.

 

We were not sure whether Neela was being earnest when she said she wanted to be a footballer.

CORRECT ANSWER
serious
---- OR ----

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