Compound Words

Learning Compound Words

A compound word is made when two or more words are joined (with or without a hyphen) to form a new word and subsequently, a new meaning. For example, there is one blackbird but there are many different black birds. Learning continued…

Video Lessons

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K-2nd Grade Compound Word Games

Compound Animal Word Match Compound Words – Transportation
Divide the Compound Words General Compound Word Match

3rd-5th Grade Compound Word Games

Break It Up: Compound Words Compound Word Match – Jobs
Compound Word Match – Nature Compound Words Match – Sports
Make a Compound Word Sneaking Up On My Best Scores Ever!


compound words, especially through word matching games, is fun for kids. Plus compound words help kids grasp language structure and increase their interest in words, especially prefixes, suffixes and word roots.

Compound words exist in many languages and offer great insight into the inner workings of each language, including the basic building blocks such as prefixes, suffixes and word roots. In English, there are three forms of compound words: closed form (notebook), hyphenated form (mother-in-law), and open form (real estate).

Students find it fun to learn compound words and practice English vocabulary with fun compound word games. Teachers can best prepare their students by making lists of compound words organized by level. There are excellent resources for creating worksheets for compound words for first grade and activities for compound words for second grade online. Teachers wanting to prepare lesson plans on compound words for third grade classroom activities or compound words for fourth grade can also find what they need effortlessly. Teaching more complex compound words for fifth grade and creating exercises for compound words for sixth grade requires more targeted worksheets and games. Students of all ages can use word games to increase literacy.

ESL students and ESL teachers also find great value in the material, as both printable worksheets and fun online games are available to study compound words. Because they are such an integral part of the English language, it is common to find compound words on standardized tests.

Some examples of compound words include:

* Noun-Noun Compounds: fireman, newsstand, pigtail, ladybug, classroom
* Noun-Verb Compounds: housesitting, finger-pointing
* Verb-Noun Compounds: spoilsport, killjoy, breakfast, pickpocket, crossword
* Verb-Verb Compounds: go and do, up and leave
* Verb-Adverb Compounds: drop-out, fall-out, camp-out
* Adverb-Verb Compounds: intake, backtrack, backdrop, foreground
* Adjective-Noun Compounds: hardware, software, blackboard, shortchange
* Adjective-Verb Compounds: blacklist, shortchange