Morphology is a powerful tool for teaching older students both decoding longer words and understanding new vocabulary words. We use the suffix -er in two ways. First, we can use the suffix -er to turn a verb into a noun which is the person who does that thing.
teach – teacher
In this lesson, we will focus on using the suffix -er to turn adjectives into comparative adjectives. We use comparative adjectives to compare two things. If we need to compare more than two things, we use superlative adjectives.
calm – calmer
In this lesson, you will teach students many things.
- suffixes come at the end of words
- suffixes change the meaning of a word
- suffixes are not words, but they are units of meaning
- we use the suffix -er to turn adjectives into comparative adjectives
- sometimes we have to change the spelling at the end of the base word to add the -er suffix
- there are some irregular comparative adjectives
It is helpful for students to know the parts of speech as they work on morphology. If your students need to work on parts of speech, I highly recommend this writing program. It teaches writing complete sentences based on parts of speech. If you need to, you can even use these two programs at the same time.
Teaching the Suffix -ER
To teach your students about the suffix -er, display the presentation below. You can access the presentation from this website for free. You can also purchase the slideshow for use at school.
This lesson teaches the function of the suffix, but it focuses on spelling because there are so many spelling rules for adding suffixes that begin with a vowel. At the beginning of each lesson, you will share the slide with the basic information and the chart that shows the different spelling patterns. Then, students will practice the spelling patterns using this routine:
- You display an adjective from the presentation.
- Students write the adjective with the -er suffix in their writing notebooks or on a whiteboard.
- You display the adjective with the suffix -er from the presentation (the next slide).
- Students check their work and get immediate feedback.
This is a spiral review lesson. Each day, you will teach students one spelling pattern for the suffix -er. Students will practice that pattern and review any past patterns. The complete lesson will take ten days. You also get mixed review for practice later in the year to keep your students fresh.
The Presentation on the Suffix -ERMorphology: Comparative Adjectives by Cate O’Donnell
A video example of the presentation is coming soon!
More Morphology Practice
Do you love this lesson? You can access all of the morphology lessons for FREE on this website! You can also purchase the presentations!