Studying prefixes and suffixes helps improve vocabulary and reading comprehension. Lists of common prefixes and suffixes serve as a reference point for children as they are reading or completing free worksheets that help them practice recognizing and using these common word parts.
Free Worksheets on Prefixes and Suffixes
The best way to learn prefixes and suffixes is to practice using them. These worksheets provide children with an opportunity to practice using the meanings of common prefixes and suffixes to match words with their definitions or define unfamiliar words.
If you need help downloading the printables, check out these helpful tips.
Using their knowledge of prefixes, children match words to their definitions. This will teach children to recognize the role prefixes play in common words.
Help children learn suffix meanings and see how they fit into a word by filling in the suffixes for common words. Children are given the definition of the word and then must find the suffix using that definition, and their knowledge of suffix meanings.
Using Prefixes and Suffixes
Made up words can help children better understand the meaning of prefixes and suffixes and the roles they play in language. Children are given the task of defining made up words based on their understanding of prefixes and suffixes. Challenge your children to come up with new words as well.
When teaching children prefixes, do not introduce them to all of the prefixes you can think of at once. Start with a few prefixes at a time and gradually introduce more. Use these 10 common prefixes as a starting point.
Ten Common Prefixes
| Prefix || Meaning |
| Un- || Not |
| Re- || Again |
| Il/Im/In/Ir/I- || Not |
| Dis- || Opposite of |
| En/Em- || In |
| Non- || Not |
| In/Im- || Not or into |
| Sub- || Under |
| Pre- || Before |
| Post- || After |
Download this printable that includes these prefixes and many others to use as a reference point.
As with prefixes, focus on common suffixes. Start with 5 common suffixes and then gradually add more. This printable provides multiple suffixes to add to your child's vocabulary.
Five Common Suffixes
| Suffix || Meaning |
| -ion, tion, ation, ition || act or process |
| -able, ible || able to be |
| -ness || state/condition of |
| -ment || action |
| -ic || related to |
Other Prefix and Suffix Worksheet Resources
There are a variety of resources for printing out suffix and prefix worksheets. You can start with a simple list of prefixes or a list of suffixes. Print these lists out and keep them as a handy reference as you are studying and working on other worksheets.
- First School Years offers multiple worksheets and quizzes related to common prefixes and suffixes. Lists of words using common prefixes and suffixes are also available to print.
- School Express has a collection of printable prefix and suffix worksheets designed for younger children and containing graphics to aid with understanding.
- ESL Galaxy features interactive quizzes and worksheets that contain multiple choice and word association questions related to prefixes and suffixes.
- Busy Teacher offers over 30 worksheets submitted and rated by teachers to help students practice recognizing and using prefixes and suffixes.
In addition to these worksheets, encourage your children to add examples of words they find that use common prefixes and suffixes to one of the printable lists or to a list in a notebook. Have children make up words using prefixes and suffixes too.