Practicing Prefixes & Suffixes

What does a beach ball have to do with prefixes and suffixes?

Beach Ball Prefixes and Suffixes

Then, add in some Sharpie markers.  Beach ball + Sharpie markers = ????  Hmmm…..

Beach Ball Prefixes and suffixes

Beach ball + Sharpie markers = a small group or whole class game to practice prefixes and suffixes!  Super fun, and the students LOVE it!

I bought this beach ball at Dollar General, for $1, as you can see.  I chose a handful of prefixes and suffixes my students knew and wrote them with Sharpie marker.


How to play:

1.  Students toss the beach ball to each other.  I have them call out the name of the person that they are tossing the beach ball to before actually tossing it.

2.  The student that catches the ball, identifies the prefix or suffix that their left thumb lands on.  This is the prefix or suffix that they will work with.

When I first introduce the game, we start out with one objective.  As we progress, I gradually add objectives to the game.  This is the objectives, and order, in which they are added to the game.

1.  Identify the word part as prefix or suffix.

2.  Give the meaning of the prefix or suffix.

3.  Give an example of a word using the prefix or suffix.

4.  Supply the definition of the example you have given.

5.  Identify any spelling changes that occurred.

Tips for Differentiation

  • Have all students supply an example on a marker board.  If the student with the ball is stumped, they can ask for assistance.
  • Partner up students when playing.
  • Be sure to give the student with the ball think time.

Other Tips

  • Have students stand.  Once they have had a turn, they sit down.  This way everyone gets a chance.
  • Boys can only toss to girls and girls to boys.


Looking for ways to teach and implement the use of prefixes and suffixes into your classroom?  Here are a handful of resources that will get you started and keep you going through the entire year!  Click each image to learn more.

Month by Month Word Study from Prefixes, Suffixes & RootsInteractive Notebook for Prefixes and SuffixesGreek and Latin Roots Word Work Interactive NotebookWord Work Practice ~ PrefixesWord Work Practice ~ Suffixes

Mandy Neal at Teaching With Simplicity
Mandy Neal at Teaching With Simplicity

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