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Learn 108 Greek and Latin roots, root words and affixes (prefixes & suffixes). Learn English language
vocabulary better. Analyze unknown words. Play 12 zero-prep games. For homeschool or classroom.

A Spiral Study of Latin & Greek Roots

Latin and Greek Roots Menu

Debbie in TX writes, "My kids love it and it is so easy and workable.
We play a game on Fridays and that is a highlight. Thanks for making
this so fun and EASY. I am selling my other roots curriculum."

See independent reviews and other users' comments.

Are you studying biology this year or next? Check out Science Roots.
It follows the sequence of Apologia's Exploring Creation With Biology.

"I think it is a valuable study tool."
-Dr. Jay Wile, author of the Apologia textbooks
Science Roots cover

What phonics is to reading, that's what root study is to vocabulary. Phonics gives you the tools to read almost any word, while roots give you the tools to unlock a flood of vocabulary. Barron's SAT Prep Manual says, "Learning fifty key word parts can help you unlock the meaning of over 100,000 words!" Which is easier to learn, fifty roots or 100,000 new words?

Vocabulary Vine is the fun, easy, high-retention way to learn roots. This non-consumable book is designed for 4th through 9th graders. See the When Can I Start table. You learn 108 roots which is three per week for 36 weeks. Your goal is to learn these roots to help you understand English vocabulary since more than 70 percent of English (and 95 percent of upper vocabulary) comes from Latin and Greek word origins. You can play 12 zero-preparation games to practice what you've learned. All for just $9.95.

Study takes about 15 minutes per day. You create a study card with the day's study root and the three example words provided in the book. You make up your own definitions for the example words using the meanings of their roots. For instance, since "thermo" means "heat" and "meter" means "measure," then at the example word "thermometer" you might write, "a tool to measure heat."

What sets this program apart? There are many roots programs out there - English from the Roots Up, Word Roots, Rummy Roots, etc. What's so special about this one?
  1. Interrelated roots. You study roots through example words (derivatives). Most example words contain today's study root plus a recent or near-future root (e.g. "thermometer" contains yesterday's root, thermo, and today's root, meter). This natural review process, working with the root at least three times over several days, reinforces it in your memory and makes what you've learned more permanent.

  2. 12 zero-preparation games to practice and review roots. One typical game is Smorgasbord: create a sentence with as many roots as possible.

  3. Familiar example words. Most example words are very common (e.g. automobile), and all are at least reasonably familiar (e.g. geothermal). No obscure words no one's ever heard of.

  4. Learning through thinking skills. Rather than simple memorization, students learn through logic. In order to invent definitions using the meanings of the roots, they have to think hard about the roots and how they are used. In-depth thinking establishes the roots in the brain more firmly than simple copying and reciting.

  5. The fun of word play. Roots are fun by their nature, and Vocabulary Vine taps into that fun. Students play with the roots and puzzle out how the roots relate to the words they build.

  6. No fluff. You make index cards and create your own definitions for the example words in the book using the meanings of the roots. There are no bulletin board lesson plans, no examples from classical literature, no philosophy of education, no decorated worksheets, no word-search puzzles, no mobiles or collages to make, . . . you get the idea.

  7. Written for homeschoolers. Although many classroom teachers have seen good results with this book, Vocabulary Vine was written for homeschoolers. You won't have to convert a classroom-oriented book; it's already designed for a homeschool setting.

  8. Roots logically relate to the definition of the word. The roots in "thermometer" mean "measure heat," so it's a good example word. But the roots in "person" mean "sound through," making it a terrible example word, so I don't use it.

The book is 55 pages and it is non-consumable. The price is significantly lower than many of the roots programs on the market. The "bare minimum" instructions fit on a page and a half, meaning that you can pick it up and get started very quickly. More complete instructions follow if you want to read more.

Bingo Cards for Vocabulary Vine

Optional. Twelve different bingo cards for Vocabulary Vine. Printed on 8" x 11" cardstock. Six are for the first half of the book and six are for the second half. Fun, simple, hands-on way to review and reinforce roots. Use the Game Tiles, below, to randomly call out roots. The players mark the English definitions of the roots on their bingo cards. The price is $3.00, but since you need the tiles to play the game, they are only sold as a set with the game tiles. Contact me if you need additional bingo cards. See Bingo Cards for further details.

Game Tiles for Vocabulary Vine

Optional. 120 game tiles with one root each: 108 are study roots and the other 12 are important incidental roots. Each tile is 1" x ", printed on card stock, and you cut them up. The back is blank. They make the book's games more convenient. Great for hands-on learners. The set includes 2 grid sheets for matching games. See some ideas of how to use them for review games. The price is $3.50, but since bingo is one of the games, they are only sold as a set with the bingo cards. Contact me if you need additional tiles.

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Latin & Greek Roots Menu

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since June 27, 2004