Is a House a Home?

Posted by on Aug 27, 2012 in Uncategorized | 2 comments

A fun activity for building vocabulary uses the connotations that words bring. Students can have a discussion about which word for small seems the “smallest.” This is a great discussion that lets children sense the variation found in the meanings of synonyms.

small, tiny, little, miniature, petite, scant, wee, undersized, microscopic

The kids could make a continuum of smallness and develop some new vocabulary at the same time.

Conversely, they could try big words!

big, large, enormous, gigantic, huge, immense, great, mammoth, giant

Another idea is to create an imaginary line in the room. Students can stand on a spot on the line that shows how “good/bad” a word is.

For example, with one wall being “full” and the other wall being “empty,” where would you stand for “hungry,” “starving,” “famished,” “ravenous,” “hungry as a wolf?”

Or, put these “house” words in the order of how nice they would be to live in: “home,” “house,” “dwelling,” “hut,” “cabin,” “resort,” “cottage,” “mansion,” “castle,” “lodge,” “bungalow.”

And, put these words in order according to how “mad” they sound: “angry,” “furious,” “irate,” “cross,” “huffy,” “annoyed,” “raving,” “burned up.”

Put these words in order according to how “happy” they are: “happy,” “joyous,” “delighted,” “jolly,” “glad,” “pleased,” “overjoyed,” “radiant,” “cheery,” “good-humored.”

There are many more word connotations that are easily accessible with a thesaurus to help kids in grades 2–6 develop deeper understanding of word meanings. This activity has the additional benefit of helping kids choose words in writing more thoughtfully.


Word of the Day Set 2 # 6

Set 2 # 6

Find more Vocabulary Development Word of the Day cards at my TpT store.


  1. Great post. I need to start collecting all the examples in one place so I have them handy!

  2. Thanks! I appreciate your support.

Leave a Reply