In Association with Nasen

Using Context Clues

Your students won’t be able to keep their mitts off these 40 graded comprehension passages to help develop skills in using context clues. The motivational texts, variety and careful grading speak of fine quality, while the clear presentation and design of Using context clues shout of supremely good taste. Texts cover reading levels Entry Level 1 to Level 1 (RA 6-15). Complete with instructions, teaching tips and answer card.

If your students understand context clues, they will be able to make sense of unfamiliar vocabulary. There are four common context clues:

  • synonyms – where words with the same meaning are used in the same sentence
  • antonyms – where words with the opposite meaning reveal the meaning of another word
  • explanation – where the meaning of a word is explained explicitly
  • example – where specific examples are used to define a word.

The activities in these cards provide your students with plenty of practice in using context clues.

The front of each card contains a title and an introductory sentence – so you can start by asking students to predict what the text may be about. The passage is on page two with questions facing on page 3. This allows your student to scan the passage to answer the questions, rather than needing to flip a card over. The questions are all multiple-choice – the student has to choose the single best answer from the content of the passage.

Here’s an example of what to expect from an Entry Level 3 card (reading age 9.7):


Use the title and introductory sentence to discuss what the text may be about.



Passage on the left. Multiple-choice answers on the right.

Printed on card, as a multisensory alternative to book format, the cards open up to measure 300mm x 100mm.

The clear typeface is 11 point size. Students say the neat presentation makes Comps feel ‘grown-up’ compared to more typical SEN materials.

View the full Hands On Comps range here >>

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