Analogies - Word Masters

 a-nal-o-gy |əˈnaləjē|
noun ( pl. -gies)
a comparison between two things, typically on the basis of their structure and for the purpose of explanation or clarification

All three sets of our 75 Word Masters words are available to download at the bottom of this page.

 You may want to visit the websites Analogy of the Day and Antonyms for some fun practice in anticipation of our first challenge.

Word Masters Challenge 

  Students in my class will participate in an analogy competition focused on this first set of 25 words.  Two additional sets of 25 words will be given out over the course of the year, and the final test could incorporate any of these 75 words.  This is a great way of increasing vocabulary, building critical thinking skills, and developing metaphorical/analogical writing skills.

  As your child reads, have them look for Word Masters Words.   Seeing these words in context helps clarify the variations in meaning of specific words in your child's head.  When you come across them, ask what part of speech is used  in that particular sentence (noun, adjective, verb,  or adverb). 

     As you look over your child's writing homework, encourage them to use these words when considering their word choice.

Ways to think about analogies.

As the definition above states, an analogy is a comparison between two things.   Word Masters is a test of 20 pairs of analogies.  If you can understand how the first pair of words in an analogy relate, then you can solve the second half of the analogy.

 When you're reading an analogy the : is read "is to", and the :: is read "as".
for example
finger : hand :: toe : foot
is read
finger is to hand as toe is to foot

Let's look at some common types of relationships:

Part to Whole
or (Whole to Part)
Example -  acorn : oak  or  (oak : acorn)
An acorn is a part of an oak tree. 
Remember that all of these relationships can be reversed, and the order of the words is very important when trying to solve an analogy.

General to Specific or (Specific to General) also known as Categorical Analogies
Example - Feeling : pride or (pride : feeling)
Feeling describes a general emotional state, but pride is a specific emotional state.
Master : chef is another example where master is a general term of ability, and chef is a specific job title for someone who is a master.

Synonyms - words that mean the same or similar things.
Example - haul : carry
To haul something means to carry it, although hauling implies a large load.

Antonyms - words that mean the opposite things.
Example - permanent : temporary
In this case, permanent and temporary are both words having to do with time, but they mean opposite extremes of time.
master: novice is another pair of antonyms, but this time they relate to ability level instead of time.

Size or Number
- large to small or small to large, as well as a single member of a group, and a whole group of them.
Size example - feast : snack :: liter : milliliter
Number example - bee : swarm :: fish : school
Amount example - drench : moisten

Age or offspring or gender - young to old, or old to young.  Likewise, you can have male and female comparisons.
Age Example - stallion : colt  or mare : filly
Male/female example - filly : colt or mare : stallion

Descriptive relationship - One of the two words could describe the other word in some way.
Example - hands : gnarled
In this pair, hands is a noun and gnarled is an adjective.  Again the order could be reversed, and the second pair would also have to be in a similar order,
like gnarled : hands :: twisted : branches
In this case both gnarled and twisted are adjectives, and they both come first in the word pairs because they describe the noun in the second pair of words.
Likewise, condemned : dwelling works in this way.  Someone's house or dwelling could be condemned because it's unsafe to live in. Condemned describes the dwelling.  

Parts of Speech are important too!  If the relationship is NOUN to VERB in the first pair of words, the relationship in the second pair of words also needs to follow the same part of speech pattern.

David Leonard,
Feb 28, 2014, 7:16 AM
David Leonard,
Feb 28, 2014, 7:17 AM
David Leonard,
Feb 28, 2014, 7:17 AM