Homophones




Homophones, or “sound-alikes,” are words that are pronounced like another word, or words, but are different in meaning, origin, or spelling, such as their/there/they’re and to/too/two.

Recognizing homophones is essential to correct spelling because even spell-check programs will not recognize them as spelling errors. Students begin learning in first grade to identify and use context clues to determine the correct meaning of sound-alike words (to, too; for, four), and later use a dictionary or rely on memory to spell the word correctly.

Though homophones are a common source of confusion, the lessons exploring their meanings can be especially fun and interesting, from the frequently used (ate/eight, deer/dear, flew/flu) to the more unusual (baron/barren, bouillon/bullion, gorilla/guerilla).

Learn about more Frequently Confused Words: homonyms, heteronyms/homographs and capitonyms.

View Common Core State Standards Related to HomophonesClose

Common Core State Standards Related to Homophones

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.4.1.G
Demonstrate command of the conventions of standard English grammar and usage when writing or speaking: Correctly use frequently confused words (e.g., to, too, two; there, their).

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.4.4
Determine or clarify the meaning of unknown and multiple-meaning words and phrases based on grade 4 reading and content, choosing flexibly from a range of strategies.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.L.4.4a
Use context (e.g., definitions, examples, cause/effect relationships and comparisons in text, or restatements in text) as a clue to the meaning of a word or phrase.

CCSS.ELA-­Literacy.L.5.4.a
Use context (e.g., cause/effect relationships and comparisons in text) as a clue to the meaning of a word or phrase.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.L.K.4.a
Identify new meanings for familiar words and apply them accurately (e.g., knowing duck is a bird and learning the verb to duck).

View Words at a GlanceClose

1st Grade Homophones:

  • List 1: to, two, one, won, be, bee, in, inn, sun, son
  • List 2: for, four, see, sea, I, eye, meet, meat, ant, aunt

2nd Grade Homophones:

  • List 1: toe, tow, week, weak, mane, main, tail, tale, our, hour
  • List 2: bare, bear, so, sew, here, hear, dear, deer, grown, groan

3rd Grade Homophones:

  • List 1: hare, hair, sail, sale, wait, weight, their, there, maid, made
  • List 2: hole, whole, medal, metal, knight, night, fur, fir, right, write
  • List 3: road, rode, piece, peace, cents, sense, ate, eight, threw, through

4th Grade Homophones:

  • List 1: peak, peek, seam, seem, feat, feet, steal, steel, flea, flee
  • List 2: male, mail, pale, pail, days, daze, rays, raise, vane, vain, vein
  • List 3: pair, pare, pear, stair, stare, loan, lone, flour, flower, principle, principal

5th Grade Homophones:

  • List 1: throne, thrown, doe, dough, clothes, close, waist, waste, brake, break
  • List 2: cent, scent, sent, wear, where, site, sight, cite, berry, bury
  • List 3: which, witch, pedal, peddle, bored, board, sweet, suite, creek, creak

6th Grade Homophones:

  • List 1: affect, effect, allowed, aloud, aisle, isle, I’ll, patience, patients
  • List 2: weather, whether, accept, except, ceiling, sealing, hanger, hangar, alter, altar

7th Grade Homophones:

  • List 1: vile, vial, wave, waive, addition, edition, horse, hoarse, manor, manner
  • List 2: sensor, censor, bizarre, bazaar, heel, heal, carrot, carat, miner, minor

8th Grade Homophones:

  • List 1: sole, soul, rain, reign, rein, pause, paws, wail, whale, heard, herd
  • List 2: naval, navel, sheer, shear, air, heir, scene, seen, presence, presents

9th Grade Homophones:

  • List 1: cellar, seller, allusion, illusion, capital, capitol, symbol, cymbal, compliment, complement
  • List 2: boarder, border, council, counsel, genes, jeans, bridal, bridle, incite, insight
  • List 3: whine, wine, mall, maul, muscle, mussel, slay, sleigh, course, coarse

10th Grade Homophones:

  • List 1: discreet, discrete, loot, lute, currant, current, profit, prophet, borough, burrow
  • List 2: carrot, karat, moose, mousse, ascent, assent, lessen, lesson, aid, aide

11th Grade Homophones:

  • List 1: dual, duel, cereal, serial, idle, idol, faint, feint, wrote, rote
  • List 2: baron, barren, birth, berth, knead, need, mantle, mantel, leased, least

12th Grade Homophones:

  • colonel, kernel, palette, pallet, palate, morning, mourning, canvas, canvass, gorilla, guerilla

An integral part of developing vocabulary and spelling skills is to learn and understand the meanings of words that sound alike, but are spelled differently and have different meanings. VocabularySpellingCity provides word lists, printables, and interactive games and activities that give students the opportunity to practice using sound-alike words.

Try MatchIt Sentences with a Grade 4 Homophones list.