Multiple Meanings ~ Freely Reading

Have you ever gotten to the end of a passage and not understood anything you just read? Chances are you lost the meaning because of a vocabulary word, or two.  Since words are the basic building blocks in language, you need to study word meanings and how they relate to sentences and paragraphs. By doing so, you better your chances of understanding what you read. Don’t be fooled by the size of a word. Even learning the small ones takes hard work and practice.

It is no secret that vocabulary is the single best predictor of school success.

The dilemma is that even simple words have more than one meaning. The meaning of a word depends on the way it is used. Take a look at the many uses of simple words like run, fly, and spring.


to go quickly:                                        Run downstairs and get my phone.

to campaign for election:                   He is running for president.

to be sailed from a safe route:           The ship ran aground.

to flow:                                                   Let the water run before you drink it.


as in a plane:                                         The plane flies through the sky.

to float:                                                  The flags fly in the breeze.

to bat a fly ball:                                    He flied into left field.

to move swiftly:                                   Wow, how time flies!


to rise or leap:                                      The jaguar was about to spring.

to be released:                                      The door sprang open and the dog ran out.

to split or crack:                                   The boat sprang a leak.

a bouncing quality:                              She has a spring in her walk.

Even the small words change meaning depending on how they’re used in the sentence. The key is to search for meaning by building your understanding of words. The only way to build that muscle is to practice.

In this video, we will discuss multiple meanings using the word COLD as an example, we will begin to analyze words to help you better understand why the English language is so darn confusing to learn and master.

Don’t get cold feet. Watch this video now!

Boost your vocabulary by learning these Common Root Words and Word Origins.

Now Practice!

Think of the following exercises as mental push-ups. If you practice everyday, you are bound to build muscle where you need it the most.

Write two sentences for each of the following words using each word as a verb and then as a noun.


  1. play
  2. game
  3. frame
  4. break
  5. bat
  6. screen
  7. wrestle
  8. jump
  9. pickle
  10. sweep

Practice Everyday: