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prefixes and suffixes

Prefixes and suffixes

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word families - general

The following ESL resources are available for Prefixes and suffixes:

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Prefixes - gap cards
24 cards gapped for common prefixes: anti, over, non, pre, post, self, under Could be used for a snakes and ladders game


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Prefixes snap
Twenty-five cards - 11 prefixes, 14 word stems. (1) play snap. (2) Gap fill and oral follow-up


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Prefixes quiz
Two eight-question word completion quizzes. These can be done in teams (A and B) and then the teams question each other


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Adjective building - half-minute topics
Sixteen half-minute topics providing practice using adjectives formed with prefixes: incapable, illegible, irreplaceable, impatient, irresistible, indecisive, illiterate, illogical, irresponsible, improbable, illegal, irrelevant, immature, uninteresting, unadventurous,unusual


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Prefixes and suffixes
Students form words using common prefixes and suffixes


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Prefixes and suffixes extra
Students spot incorrect combinations of prefixes/stems or stems/suffixes


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Adjective building
matching - prefix + adjective + noun (Goes with SB page 75)


Adjective building quiz (184)
Gap-fill quiz relating to (old) Inside Out upper intermediate, unit 8. page 75


Noun suffixes quiz (297)
Fourteen-question exercise. Students fill in noun suffix from gapped sentences. e.g. 'The develop____ of mobile phone networks in poor countries...'


BBC prefixes quizzes (298)
Three ten-question multiple-choice quizzes in ascending order of difficulty. NB: this BBC website is aimed at young native speakers (note the emphasis on spelling). However, this item would be of use to non-native learners.


Adjective prefixes quiz 1 (375)
Gap fill. Add prefixes to individual words. il / ir / dis / un / in / im


Adjective prefixes quiz 2 (376)
Gapped sentences illustrating the words in adjective prefixes quiz 1


Prefixes and suffixes quiz (496)
Twenty question MC quiz for prefixes (adjetive and noun) and noun suffixes.


Adjective prefixes quiz 3 (1397)
Ten-question short-answer quiz for il, im, dis etc.


Noun suffixes exercise 2 (491)
Sixty gapped sentences requiring a noun with verb or adjective form given as cue.


Prefixes crossword 01 (302)
Fifteen-item crossword, all of the examples made with common prefixes - re, multi, dis etc. (Includes the following trickier examples: illogical, illegible, irreplaceable, multilingual)



General English course books (adults)

Global Upper Intermediate students' book book cover 

Global Upper Intermediate students' book 

Lindsay Clandfield   Rebecca Robb Benne   
Unit 2 Right & Wrong  Page 22   Prefix mis
Inside Out Student's Book Upper Intermediate book cover 

Inside Out Student's Book Upper Intermediate 

Vaughan Jones   Susan Kay   
Unit 8 Escape  Page 75 
adjective building (1) Compound adjectives with 'well-' or '-conscious' (Uses examples from reading Every postcard tells a story, page 74.)
(2) Adjectives with prefixes: un in ir im il
+ suffixes less ful ish (Matching exercises)
(3) Gapped text with root adjective prompts.

New Cutting Edge Upper Intermediate students' book book cover 

New Cutting Edge Upper Intermediate students' book 

Peter Moore   Sarah Cunningham   
Module 2 Life's ups and downs  Pages 20 - 21  Forming nouns and gerunds
(20) Noun - verb pairs: research and researh etc. (20) Passage with mulitple choice words: noun /verb/adjective etc, (21) Word completion
Module 2 Life's ups and downs  Page 27   Practise
End-of-unit extra practice section
Module 2 Life's ups and downs  Page 22   Forming adjectives
Common adjectival endings: ive, ic, able etc
Module 2 Life's ups and downs  Page 23   prefixes
Common prefixes: over, under, pre, post etc
New Inside Out Student's Book Upper Intermediate book cover 

New Inside Out Student's Book Upper Intermediate 

Susan Kay   Vaughan Jones   
Unit 4 Challenge  Pages 36 - 37  Ben Saunders: Polar explorer
Reading about the youngest person to ski solo to the North Pole + vocab work focusing on prefixes and suffixes
Straightforward Advanced Student's Book book cover 

Straightforward Advanced Student's Book 

Roy Norris   
1D The quarterlife crisis  Pages 12 - 13  Noun suffixes

Photocopiable resource books

Play Games with English Book 2 (1981-8) book cover 

Play Games with English Book 2 (1981-8) 

Colin Granger   John Plumb   
Opposites quiz page 30  Page 30 
dis... un... im... in... Ss form opposites of 12 adjectives (with picture prompts) by adding these prefixes.

General English adult course resource packs

Reward Upper-intermediate Resource Pack book cover 

Reward Upper-intermediate Resource Pack 

Susan Kay   
9 - 12b Impossible?  Pages 9 - 12
Dominoes game with prefixes.

ESL lesson plans

Politics and the US Election

Complete lesson Vocabulary: politics, elections; skills: political issues.
US Election ESL worksheet 1 US Election ESL worksheet 2 US Election ESL worksheet 3 US Election ESL worksheet 4
Download Politics and the US Election (PDF)

Gender discrimination at work

Complete lesson Vocabulary: work clothes; skills: gender discrimination; grammar: reported speech.
Gender descrimination ESL worksheet 1 Gender descrimination ESL worksheet 2 Gender descrimination ESL worksheet 3
Download Workplace gender discrimination (PDF)

English grammar notes

Comparison with as...as

Comprehensive grammar reference notes, illustrated.
Grammar notes on comparison with as..as 1 Grammar notes on comparison with as..as 2 Grammar notes on comparison with as..as 3
Download English grammar notes: comparison with as...as (PDF)