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A true story AND what could it possibly have to do with Word Analysis?

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A couple of months ago, I took my grandson (6 years old) to the library. Of course when we passed the vending machine, a snack was called for. What he wanted cost $1.25. I didn't have a dollar bill, but I did have some quarters. So (knowing the importance of "teachable moments") I asked him, "How many quarters do we need if it cost $1.25?"
He said he didn't know. Did I tell him? Of course NOT!
But I DID tell him, "Whenever you hear a word that has 'quart or quad' in it, it means 4 of something. So, how many quarters do you think are in a dollar?"
He told me 4.
I asked how he knew that and he said, "Because it had "quart" in it."
Then I said, so how many quarters are in one dollar and 25 cents?
He said, "5." (He's good at math!)

I told him that was right, made a fuss over it, and gave him the 5 quarters. He loaded them into the machine, got his snack and started walking out the door. Did I stop this teachable moment? Of course NOT!
I asked, "So, how many sides do you think there is in a quadrilateral?"
He said, "4." I asked,
"How did you know that?"
He answered, "Because it has quad in it."
I asked, "How many quarts do you think there are in a gallon?" (I doubt if he knew what a gallon really was.)
He said, "4.".
I asked, "How many angles do you think there are in a quadrangle?" (His class will be learning this soon, but MY GRANDSON will already know it!)
He said, "4."
I asked, "How many feet would a quadraped have?" (I think I made that one up. Is there such a word?)
He said, "4."
I asked how many babies would have been born at the same time, like twins are 2 babies, if the babies were quadruplets?"
Of course, he said, "4."
THEN, I said, "Now, this is a hard one. If a bicycle has 2 wheels and a tricycle has 3 wheels and a unicycle has 1 wheel, what do you think we could call a vehicle with 4 wheels? (This is higher order thinking because he has to use what he has learned and come up with 2 word parts that have meaning and make a word that he has never heard before. Do you think he did it?)
Yep, he actually said, "A quadcycle?". AND I said, YES!!!!"

I believe that our little conversation is going to make my grandson a better reader, a better thinker, and a better learner. That day he developed a concept of quart and quad meaning the number 4, but he also was exposed to the fact that word parts can mean something and when you put those word parts onto other words, it changes the meaning of those words. He also started building word consciousness, which means that he became aware that you could actually think about words, and you can change words, and how you put words together is important.

I couldn't have seized that teachable moment if I hadn't known that the morphemes "quad and quart" mean 4.  The time you spend with your child is full of teachable moments.  If you learn even the first 50 of these high frequency morphemes, you will never think of words the same way again.  You will be able to seize many, many teachable moments, which will greatly enrich your child's life.

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This is a systematic, EASY way of learning these morphemes.  The more of them you know, the more teachable moments you can seize.  Even if your children are older - high school or even college age, you can help them if YOU know these morphemes.  Feel free to let your children ages 9 - adult learn them with you!

You should hear what I can do with the morpheme "tain"!  Email me and I'll tell you.

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Why do YOU as a teacher or parent also need to know the most frequently seen morphemes?  If YOU know the word parts and their meanings, your teaching will be greatly enhanced as you can recognize and seize countless “teachable moments”  throughout your day.
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Practice and repetition are very important when memorizing. These electronic flashcards can be used as part of any word analysis study.  They were strategically created to be a systematic way of learning and practicing the most common morphemes.  They will help your students learn the morphemes and commit them to memory.

The electronic flashcards are actually 12 separate slide shows with each slide transitioning automatically.  An individual morpheme appears first, then after waiting several seconds to allow the students to say its meaning, the answer is shown.  You may either project the slide shows on a screen for whole class practice or download onto multiple computers for individual practice.  Each set introduces at least 8  morphemes and reviews previously learned morphemes, giving students spaced-review.  Begin with Set#1, then go to Set #2, etc.

They also are organized to reinforce the lessons in the book, Word Analysis: Unlocking the Meaning of Words. So, Set #1 flashcards go with Set #1 in the book, etc. There are also 2 review sets, one after Set #5 in the book and the other after Set #10.


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Word Analysis and Flashcards Bundled Image Download the book and the flashcards for one great price.
A $23 value for $18.95

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What do experts say about teaching vocabulary?

  1. Vocabulary should be taught in context.  In this book, each new morpheme is taught in the context of a word and a sentence.
  2. Vocabulary instruction should include activating new knowledge. This book provides three opportunities to activate each morpheme. (Two in each set and 4-Square Activation activity (template provided).
  3. Vocabulary should be revisited.  Many morphemes are repeated throughout this book. PLUS, there are two formal cumulative reviews (one after set #5 and one after set #10). Reviewing with flashcards is strongly suggested and is mandatory for success. Electronic flashcards are sold separately. It is also recommended that the student(s) also make their own flashcards using index cards and markers.
Addresses the following College and Career Readiness Anchor Standard (CCRA L.4) and the following Common Core State Standards: CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.2.4c; CCSS.ELA – Literacy.L.3.4b, CCSS.ELA – Literacy.L.3. 4c; CSS.ELA – Literacy.L.4.4b; CCSS.ELA – Literacy.L.5.4b; CCSS.ELA – Literacy.L.6.4b; CCSS.ELA – Literacy.L.7.4b; CCSS.ELA – Literacy.L.8.4b

GREAT NEWS:  This book is now interactive.  You can give your students even more practice using these 110 morphemes on your touchboard, smartboard, mimio, computer, or tablet!  For a sample interactive lesson, Go to and click on the last picture at the top.

Helping teachers and parents create better readers.

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This page last updated 06/22/2016