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Punctuation Clues Context Clues Summary There are several ways to figure out words you don't know

, such as looking them up in a dictionary or figuring them out using word parts. Another, possibly more efficient way to figure out unfamiliar words is to use the context. Using context means to figure out what words mean by how they are used in the sentence or paragraph where they appear. There are several different context clues you can use to help you figure out unfamiliar words. Authors often use punctuation clues to help the reader. Punctuation clues might include commas, dashes, or parentheses. Examples:
• • • • •

Mary retained, kept, the deed to her mother's house. I wonder if that fruit is edible, able to be eaten. The company is going through many transitions—changes. Children are often loquacious—very talkative—and active. Bigamy—marriage to two spouses at the same time—is not legal in the United States.

Authors also use bold and/or italics to make a reader aware of an important term. Often the definition of the word in bold or italics follows. Examples:
• •

The computer is a machine that accepts input, processes data, stores information, and produces output. Archaeology is the scientific study of prehistoric cultures by excavation of their remains.

patients for not exercising enough. . or scolded. and necessary to exercise frequently. Examples: • • Reducing cholesterol has a number of beneficial results. (synonym clue) I despise liver. ten years) doctors have often 4. The body could become weak.__________. Over the past 3. or reduce. authors will sometimes define important terms in the margins of text. damaged. and 5.__________ (i. stress. One positive outcome is reducing the risk of heart disease. but I adore steak. Use the punctuation clues provided to define the underlined terms.__________over Archaeologists look for many clues when trying to figure out the past. Example: Archaeology—the scientific study prehistoric cultures by excavation of their remains Exercise 2: Matching Directions: Read the following paragraphs. important.e. it is 2.__________. Archaeology has long been embraced as a key to unlocking the mysteries and secrets of past civilizations. (antonym clue) In addition to the above context clues.Authors may use word clues such as synonyms—words with almost the same meaning—or antonyms—words opposite in meaning—near the unfamiliar term.__________. In order to 1.

1. but one must start somewhere.5 2.e. castigated C. You will soon 10.2 1. Don’t feel 9.3 1. decade D. impaired B. your expectations and find yourself looking forward to your daily exercise. full of energy). But often one wonders where to begin. Work up to a thirty-minute daily walk.__________. alleviate . Soon you will find yourself 8. such as missing one day here and there. or scorn.4 1. It is difficult to overcome a 6. It might be best to begin with 7. for yourself for small violations.__________. lazy) lifestyle.__________ (i.or exceed. 1. changes.1 1. blank 1 blank 2 blank 3 blank 4 blank 4 A.e. match each item on the left to the corresponding item at right.time if one neglects to partake in some form of exercise. Using the pulldown boxes. vital E._________(i. Start with a ten-minute walk through your neighborhood every other day. match each item on the left to the corresponding item at right. or slight.__________. Using the pulldown boxes.

contempt B. Use the punctuation clues provided to help you. because he operated on my good arm instead of . subtle E. energized Exercise 1: Fill-in-the-Blank Directions: Read the following sentences and choose the term that best fits.4 2.e. .2. inundated consequences quixotic leisurely hypothetically subdue edible repress fake intensity bipartisan Spartan one.5 blank 6 blank 7 blank 8 blank 9 blank 10 A. I had to sue my doctor for . The president is always hoping for support from two parties). and support (i. we took our time.2 2. professional misconduct.1 2. The changes in the program were important. lethargic D. genealogy accumulate significant external beneficiary malpractice nocturnal psyche 1. surpass C. 3. essential. Our trip was a 2. 4.3 2.

. 8. 9. 5. Often (outside) forces cause changes in one’s life. . felt overwhelmed with my workload. 7. history. 6. I. . they fly around and look for food at . and Near the end of the semester. You should try to broken arm. Owls are night. The weather reporter predicted a storm of high it sure did have a great deal of energy. I wanted to trace my family’s background. support for your . 10 . students often feel with work. or gather. too.

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