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Compound Words


Compound Words

Compound Words

Learning Objectives

In this lesson, you will focus on the following objectives: Vocabulary:
  • Understanding compound words.
  • Understanding language resources.

Compound Words

Literature Connection
In the quotation below, wheelbarrow is a compound word, a word made up of two words that together have a meaning different from the meaning of each word individually. Compound words may be spelled open (magic lantern), closed (sawdust), 
or hyphenated (half-deserted). A dictionary will give you the correct form. 

so much depends 
a red wheel 
—William Carlos Williams, from “The Red Wheelbarrow”

Williams writes wheelbarrow as an open compound for poetic effect.

The meanings of many compound words are obvious from the parts that make up the word.
  • What is sawdust ?
    It is the dust created by sawing wood. 

  • What is a look-alike?
    It is something that looks just like something else.
  • What is a natural resource?
    It is a naturally occurring material that is useful to humans.

To learn the meaning of less familiar compound words, consult a dictionary.


Compound Words Tip

If a compound word does not appear in a dictionary, it is most likely to be correctly spelled open.

Grammar Tip

A compound word is made of two separate words that each have a different meaning standing alone.

Compound Words Quiz

Select the correct definition for each compound word. 

Mr. ‏El-Sayed Ramadan ‎ ‎


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