A synonym is a word with a similar or identical meaning to a different word. Learning about literacy synonyms helps pupils to strengthen their literacy skills and develop an understanding of the nuances of the English language. Read on to learn more about synonyms.

If you’re wondering, “what does ‘synonym’ mean?” you’re in the right place. In this handy teaching wiki, we’ll review synonyms and how they can be used in a sentence. We’ll also explain where they fall into the National Curriculum and how you can teach your class about them.

What does synonym mean?

A synonym is a word, morpheme, or phrase with the same or similar meaning to another word. For example, synonyms of ‘happy’ include ‘joyful,’ ‘cheery,’ and ‘contented.’

When learning about literacy synonyms, you will often find references to antonyms. Antonyms are the opposite of synonyms, so the meaning of an antonym is the opposite of your word. For example, an antonym of ‘happy’ is ‘sad.’

You can find literacy synonyms by looking up your word in a thesaurus, a particular type of dictionary for finding synonyms and antonyms.

Why do we use Literacy Synonyms?

Synonyms are a helpful way to add some variation to your language when you’re writing or speaking in long form. It can be easy to fall into the trap of repeating the same word repeatedly. That’s why it’s always a good idea to have synonyms ready to keep your language fresh.

Synonyms often have very slight differences in meaning, which sometimes means one is more appropriate than another in a given context. There are cases where a synonym might even be a better choice than the original word you’ve chosen.

For example, let’s look at our synonyms of ‘happy’:

The choir sang happy songs.
The choir sang joyful songs.
The choir sang cheery songs.
The choir sang contented songs.

In this context, ‘happy,’ ‘cheery,’ and ‘joyful’ all have similar meanings, but ‘contented’ sounds strange.

Let’s try another literacy synonyms example:

She is happy with the result.
She is joyful with the result.
She is cheery about the result.
She is content with the result.

This time, ‘happy’ and ‘contented’ have the most similar meaning in the context, whereas ‘joyful’ and ‘cheery’ don’t sound right!

Examples: 9 Synonyms for literacy

If you’re still asking, “what does ‘synonym’ mean?” then let’s use the word ‘literacy’ as an example.

Literacy is the ability to read, write, speak and listen. It helps us to communicate with others, express our thoughts and ideas and learn new things. Literacy language comprehension (necessary for both reading and writing) starts from birth. It only develops when adults talk with children about the world around them and the books (stories and non-fiction) they read with them and enjoy rhymes, poems and songs together.

Some examples of literacy synonyms include:

  • Education
  • Knowledge
  • Learning
  • Proficiency
  • Articulateness
  • Scholarship
  • Culture
  • Wisdom
  • Mastery
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