Learn how to teach a child prefixes so they can use them to decode unknown words when reading:


For Production (Spoken or Written)

  1. Collect a writing sample or spoken language sample and check off which common prefixes the child uses spontaneously and correctly (http://teacher.scholastic.com/reading/bestpractices/vocabulary/pdf/prefixes_suffixes.pdf)
  2. Choose one prefix to target from the list of common prefixes that the child isn’t using.
  3. Teach the meaning of the prefix and then give several examples of words that use the prefix.
  4. Have the students create sentences with various words that contain the target prefix.
  5. Have the students define words that contain the prefix.
  6. Give the child a list of words with the prefix and have him/her write or speak a paragraph that includes all of them.
  7. Move on to a new prefix

For Decoding (Reading or Listening)

  1. Ask the child to read/define a list of words that contain common prefixes.  Mark off which ones the child doesn’t understand.
  2. Choose one prefix to target at a time
  3. Teach the child what the prefix means and how to break a word apart into the prefix and the root word
  4. Practice dissecting words with the child that contain the prefix and breaking them apart into the prefix and the root to determine the meaning of the word
  5. Once the child gets the hang of it, have the child read sentences that contain the prefix and then answer questions about the sentences that will ensure the child understood the correct meaning of the word (Example: “Holly untied her shoes”, Question: “What did Holly’s shoe laces look like when she finished?”)
  6. Slowly add in more prefixes as the child gets more comfortable with that one.

More Resources for Speech-Language Pathologists:

Looking for more therapy ideas and resources to help you provide the BEST services to your clients?  Join us in The SLP Solution, our membership program for speech-language professionals!  Inside the membership, you’ll find:

  • Step-By-Step Guides for teaching a variety of speech/language/communication skills
  • Pre-Made Worksheets and Therapy Activities for hundreds of different topics
  • Training Videos for dealing with difficult disorders or problems
  • Answers to Your Questions in our exclusive SLP community
  • Tools and Resources to help you with your paperwork and admin tasks
  • Continuing Education through our monthly webinars and webinar recordings

To join us in the full SLP Solution, or to snag a free membership, click on the button below!