Beacon Lesson Plan Library

My Reading Words in My Social Studies Book?

Michelle Gordon
Collier County Schools


Student groups, using subject area textbooks, locate words with specific word parts (prefixes, roots, suffixes) in order to better comprehend the word meaning.


The student identifies word parts such as prefixes, suffixes, and root words.


-Social Studies (or Science or Math) textbooks for student groups
-Prefix/Root/Suffix List (See Preparations)
-Worksheet (See Associated File)
-Dictionaries for student groups


1. Create student groups.
2. Develop Prefix/Root/Suffix List (can be taken from vocabulary books).
3. Gather various subject area textbooks.


1. Arrange students into student groups.

2. Review the Prefix/Root/Suffix List with students. Discuss the meaning of the prefixes and suffixes. Discuss the fact that a root word has a specific meaning and the suffix just changes how it is used in a sentence. Explain that prefixes usually change the meaning of the root word and if one knows the root meaning and the prefix meaning, a general definition of the word can be figured out.

3. Instruct students to open the other subject area textbooks.

4. Review parts of the textbook with the student groups.

5. Using those textbooks, advise student groups to locate five words that they believe have a word part from the Prefix/Root/Suffix List.

6. Model an example and non-example.

7. Direct the student groups to complete the worksheet, making sure they answer the portion that asks if the definitions agree or not. Allow students to share their lists and give input to the other groups.


Completed the How Did My Reading Words End Up In My Social Studies Book??? worksheet. (See Associated File)

Majority of words fit the definition of the prefix, root or suffix.


This lesson can be very helpful to ESOL and ESE students based on the student groupings that the teacher prepares.
Return to the Beacon Lesson Plan Library.