Multisensory Activity: Meaning of the Prefix “sub-”

Multisensory Activity: Meaning of the Prefix “sub-”

Posted by Tammi Brandon on 13th Jun 2024

As with Phonics First®, in Structures®, we teach several prefixes and suffixes. In Phonics First®, we focus more on reading and spelling with the affixes, but in Structures®, we also focus on the meaning of the affixes. For example, the prefix "sub-" is taught in both curriculums. In Structures®, we delve deeper into the meaning of "sub-”, which means under.

What is the Meaning of the Prefix "sub-"

The prefix "sub-" means “under” or “below.” It's commonly used in English. It forms words that denote something lesser, smaller, or lower in position.

Think About the Following Words Beginning With the Prefix "sub-":

submarine - underwater

subway - underground transportation

substitute - stand-in teacher under the guidance of the main teacher

subtract - pulling a number out from under a larger number

submerge - put under water

Multisensory Activity for Prefix "sub-"

To help students remember that "sub" means under, use the Key Word "submarine.” While students are working on their multisensory activity, play the famous Beatles' song "Yellow Submarine.”

"We all live in a yellow submarine

Yellow submarine, yellow submarine

We all live in a yellow submarine

Yellow submarine, yellow submarine"

Materials You Will Need

  • Blue construction paper
  • Yellow crayon, colored pencil, or marker
  • Photocopy of a submarine (obtained through a quick internet search)
  • Scissors
  • Wooden craft stick
  • Tape or glue

Activity Directions

  1. To begin, have the students color their submarine yellow and then cut it out (to save time, cut the submarine out before starting the lesson). Using tape or glue, attach the craft stick to the back of the submarine.
  2. Next, cut the top of the blue construction paper to look like waves. Cut a vertical line towards the edge of the paper. Cut the slit on the same side of the paper as the student's dominant hand. Placing the slit on the same side as their dominant hand allows students to hold the craft stick in their dominant hand. The vertical slit allows for the craft stick to move back and forth to mimic a submarine moving back and forth below the water line or waves.
  3. Finally, slide the craft stick attached to the submarine through the construction paper slit. Students can use the wooden craft stick to maneuver the submarine while it remains under water.

Written by,

Tammi Brandon, M.Ed., CDP

Tammi Brandon is a Master Instructor and Education Consultant with Brainspring Educator Academy.

Bring Brainspring Orton-Gillingham multisensory instruction to your classrooms, transforming struggling K-12 readers into skilled learners through our effective, evidence-based approach.

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