teaching resource

Vocabulary Builder: Synonym Worksheet

Teach Starter Publishing
Google Slide, PDF | 2 pages | Grades: 2 - 4

Practice synonym matching with this cut and paste worksheet.

Turn your budding linguists into walking thesauruses. 

This interactive synonym matching activity builds vocabulary skills and solidifies your students’ understanding of the meanings of words. By reading each sentence for context clues, your students will be able to identify which similar word from the list at the bottom of the worksheet to swap for the underlined word in the sentence. 

How to Use (Apply, Implement, Employ) This Worksheet with your Students

This synonym worksheet could be used as a reading center activity since it involves cutting and pasting. It has been designed for independent practice but can also be done with assigned partners. 

Before matching, students will cut out the words at the bottom of the page. Then, they will read each sentence to themselves, select the synonym that best matches the underlined word in each sentence, and glue it on the blank line next to the phrase. 

Additional Activities to Stimulate (Invigorate, Promote, Energize) Synonym Recognition

Don’t stop there! We’ve got more ideas for how to turn this fun synonym exercise into more activities for independent practice and group learning:

Synonym Brain Buster

As a small group or full class, challenge your students to think of as many alternative words to the synonyms at the bottom of the page. Say each word out loud, one at a time, and talk about the definition. Then, give the students 30 seconds (you keep time) to think of as many synonyms for that word as they can. When the time is up, you can call on students to give you some examples of words they came up with, and even let them compare their answers to see if there are any matching words amongst classmates.

Group Lesson 

Using your smartboard or another projection device, present the entire sheet so that your students can see both the sentences and the synonym choices at the bottom of the page. Work through the sentences together as a whole class. When you get the correct word, write it on the line for students to see. 

Reading Center Game

No scissors, no glue, no problem! Create a reusable reading center activity by printing this resource on a single sheet of heavy cardstock to make it extra durable. Then, cut out the synonyms and use them as game pieces, and put it all in a folder to keep the board and pieces together. The students can choose which synonym fits and place it on the line next to the matching sentence. You’ve just created a sustainable classroom activity that can be played again and again! 

How to Take this Activity Further or Bring Others up to Speed

Synonyms require students to access their critical thinking skills by looking for the subtleties in word meanings. 

For students who are grasping synonyms at a faster rate, remove the answer choices so that students are challenged to come up with the answer on their own.

Students who are struggling to understand the concept might find additional support in a small group structure where they’ll benefit from extra attention. The answers can also stay attached for the student to draw arrows instead of cutting and pasting.

Preparing This Resource for Your Students

Because this download includes the answer sheet, we recommend first printing one copy of the entire file. Then, make photocopies of the blank worksheets for students to fill out on their own. 

If you plan to use this resource as a reading center activity, we suggest printing on heavy cardstock for durability. 

Before You Download

Use the drop-down menu to choose between the PDF or Google Slides version. An answer key is included in the download.

This resource was created by Kelli Goffredi, a teacher in Texas and a Teach Starter Collaborator. 

Wait! Don’t go anywhere until you browse additional activities and resources for teaching synonyms: 

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