PowerUp WHAT WORKS:Teacher Playlist

Use Context Clues and Word Analysis to Support Struggling Readers

Help students decipher the meaning of words.


Making use of context clues helps all readers, and especially those who struggle, to identify the meaning of words in text. One of the six types of context clues is being able to recognize a root word and an attached prefix and/or suffix. By knowing the meaning of the affix, readers are better able to unlock the meaning of a word.

Instructional Strategies and Tools

Help your students succeed by focusing on instructional strategies and tools for Context Clues and Word Analysis.

Context Clues

TIP: When using this technique, allow struggling readers to draw upon multiple approaches, such as direct instruction, choice of reading materials, or varied ways to interact with new words, using a range of technology tools.

Word Analysis

TIP: In "word analysis" or "word study," students break words down into morphemes, their smallest units of meaning. Being able to analyze words is not only a critical foundational reading skill, it also is essential for vocabulary development. UDL principles can help you differentiate instruction to meet the wide range of student variability.

Classroom Examples

See these strategies in action with our example lessons:

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