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Pre- And Re-, MIS- And Dis-


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About the Author

Brian P. Cleary is the author of the Words Are CATegorical(R), Math Is CATegorical(R), Food Is CATegorical(TM), and Animal Groups Are CATegorical(TM) series, as well as several picture books. He lives in Cleveland, Ohio. Martin Goneau has been working as a professional illustrator since 1997. Most of his work is dedicated to children's books and other educational publications. He lives in Trois-Rivieres, Quebec.


A bright, busy and colorful addition to the Words Are CATegorical series, this time about prefixes.

From the definition of prefixes on the dedication page to the helpful chart on the final page, teachers will find many reasons to turn to this reliable series to supplement their grammar lessons. Fully saturated colors accompany the rhyming text, introducing common prefixes like re- and un-. Goofy characters like wildly colored animals and extraterrestrials move the light verse along, extending the text and helping readers understand more challenging concepts. Using kid-pleasing words like underclothes and bicycle adds to the interest and fun. The final page, a chart with prefixes, meanings and examples, is a particularly helpful addition, allowing students to both study the concept and add examples of their own. At times, design choices detract from the content. The prefixes are in slightly different colors from the root words, on top of colored pages, which sometimes makes them difficult to discern.

Whether it's for vocabulary building or helping students understand how to take apart a word to discover its meaning, Cleary and Goneau have the right touch. --Kirkus Reviews

-- "Journal"

Expanding on a topic introduced in Straight and Curvy, Meek and Nervy (2009), Cleary's latest entry in the Words are CATegorical series pairs a rhymed introduction to common prefixes and how they change the meanings of words, with freewheeling cartoon illustrations of clothed cats in diverse, loud, unnatural colors modeling or acting out those changes. Though he avoids bringing up messy complications like contronyms (inflammable, oversight) and prefixes that look the same but have different meanings (pronoun, progress), he does tuck sufficient qualifiers into the discourse ('Trans- will sometimes mean
across. / It often hints at movement'), and in the helpful review chart at the end, he provides both additional examples for 22 prefixes and a note on when il- is used rather than im- (it has to do with the root word's first letter). Budding wordsmiths in particular will benefit from this lively look at one of language's most versatile transformative tools. --Booklist

-- "Journal"

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