Are you teaching your homeschool children to choose strong words? Or do they tend to fill their sentences with weak or boring words such as:
Perfect for any homeschool, this pocket word bank helps young writers choose strong words and synonyms instead of weak or repeated words. Here’s how to make a pocket word bank in under an hour with minimal supplies!
Make a “Strong Words” Pocket Word Bank
For this activity, you’ll need an online thesaurus such as Power Thesaurus or KidThesaurus.com. Alternatively, use an excellent print-version thesaurus such as The Synonym Finder.
- Write several words your kids tend to overuse on construction-paper rectangles or colorful index cards.
- Tape cards to a sheet of posterboard, or insert them into a tabletop pocket chart.
- Look up one of those weak words in your chosen thesaurus.
- Browse the various lists and pick out a handful of reasonable synonyms.
- Type them up using a large, clear font.
- Print out the words and cut them into strips, laminating them so they hold up longer.
- Repeat for each tired word on your pocket chart.
- Place the synonym strips in each pocket behind the appropriate word.
A “Good” Illustration
Let’s use good as an example, since it’s overused a lot. It’s convenient and easy to write good friend, good snack, good worker, or good child, even though the word good means different things each time.
But just think! With a few “good” synonyms at their disposal, your children can pick strong, specific words for their writing instead by using a pocket word bank.
Rather than use the weak word good, your children can select a stronger word from the pocket chart to describe a kindhearted friend, healthy snack, pleasant afternoon, skillful worker, or obedient child. Not only will their writing improve, their vocabulary will grow too!
Now you’re ready to make a Strong Words pocket word bank of your own! In no time, more descriptive, lively words will be spilling from your kids’ pens.
Making strong word choices is a key feature of WriteShop Primary (K-3rd) and WriteShop Junior (4th-6th). Games and activities encourage elementary-age homeschoolers to use descriptive, concrete words in their writing.