The words and/or phrases that surround an unknown word. When combined with prior knowledge, context clues give hints to the meaning of unknown words. They can be found in the same sentence or in surrounding sentences. Context Clues Video Definition Synonym Antonym Comparison and Contrast Restatement Example General Clues The definition of the unknown word is directly stated in the text. A definition clue is often set off by commas, or dashes. Example Sometimes the explorers encountered leads, open channels of water, and were forced to wait until the ice formed before going on. An unknown word is paired with a word having the same or nearly the same meaning. A synonym clue is usually set off by a comma. Example Hurricane Ike caused catastrophic, disastrous damages in Texas. An unknown word is paired with a word that means the opposite. Look for clue words that indicate contrast but, however, instead of, unlike, on the other hand Example The cashier was polite, unlike the customer, who was quite curt to her. In comparison clues, the writer suggests the meaning of an unknown word by comparing it to something similar. In contrast clues, the writer suggests the meaning of an unknown word by pointing out the differences. Example The twins barreled through the living room like a tornado. When a writer restates an unknown word in easier language, it is a restatement clue. Usually commas or dashes separate a restatement clue. Look for clue words that show restatement that is, in other words, and or Example The boy put together a hand-collated set of trading cards; in other words, he put together a set of trading cards by hand. In an example clue, the writer provides several words that are examples of an unfamiliar word. Look for key words that indicate an example is provided for example, for instance, including, such as Example Looking out the window, I could see the beautiful delphiniums. They were nestled among the roses, daisies, and daffodils. Sometimes you need to infer the meaning of an unfamiliar word by reading non-specific clues in a number of sentences. Remember to look for clues over several sentences. Example Kevin set out the broom, a dustpan, dusting rag, vacuum cleaner, and three trash bags before beginning the monumental task of cleaning his bedroom. TV411 Multiple Choice Matching Applebee, Arthur N. "Vocabulary Handbook." The Language of Literature. Evanston, IL: McDougal Littell, 2006. R24-25. Print. FOR-PD. "Florida Online Reading Professional Development." University of Central Florida, 2008. Web. 7 Sept. 2011. <http://www.robeson.k12.nc.us/cms/lib6/N C01000307/Centricity/Domain/2567/Context CluesChart.pdf>.