The following worksheets will help your students learn how to compare and contrast short writings.

The ability to compare and contrast is an important skill. It is useful in evaluating works about similar topics, arguments about positions and conclusions, deals that are being offered, and more. This collection of activity sheets will teach your students how to compare and contrast ideas, stories, and statements. In addition to evaluating whole works, your students will learn which words are used to signal either a comparison or a contrast. Answer keys are provided.

Project Idea: Have your students pull similar item descriptions from sales papers, Amazon, or other retail advertisers, and compare and contrast features, benefits, prices, and options.

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Jimmy and Evelyn Worksheet

Jimmy and Evelyn

Jimmy and Evelyn have both written about their recent birthday parties. Read both paragraphs. Then compare and contrast them by writing the things that they did on the lines below beneath their names. If they did anything that was the same, write it in the middle.

Two Buildings Worksheet

Two Buildings

Think about two buildings that you are familiar with. They can be two different homes, two different schools, or any combination of buildings.

Transition Words Worksheet

Transition Words

Writers use transition words to make writing easier to follow, and one kind of transition indicates that the writer is comparing or contrasting things. This organizational pattern emphasizes the similarities or differences between two or more items.

Comparison Worksheet

Is There Any Comparison?

Read each sentence. Does it compare or contrast? Underline the clue words. Write your answer on the line.

Two Subjects Worksheet

Two Subjects

Compare and contrast two subjects that you are currently studying in school.

Five Minutes Worksheet

Five Minutes Flat!

Choose one of the writing prompts below. Write a compare-and-contrast paragraph that answers the prompt. Write as much as you can, as fast as you can, in five minutes. Use the back of the page if you need more space.

Alternating Worksheet

Alternating and Dividing

. In the alternating method, you compare and contrast two subjects point for point. In the dividing method, you make all of your points about the first subject; then you make all of your points about the second subject.

Workshop Worksheet

Workshop

This is a nice mix of paragraph and sentence work.

Venn Diagram

The Venn Diagram

You can also use a Venn Diagram to map out what is the same and what is different about two topics in a piece of writing. For this exercise, you will use a Venn Diagram to organize your thoughts about two subjects. Then you will write a paragraph that compares and/or contrasts the subjects.

School vs Homeschool Worksheet

To School or Homeschool?

Read the passage. Then answer the questions.

Purpose Worksheet

Purpose and Intent

Which sentence best describes the overall intent of this article?

Peter and Marcus Worksheet

Peter and Marcus

Peter and Marcus have both written short descriptions of their pets. Read each description. Then fill out the Venn Diagram below to compare the two dogs.

Dividing Worksheet

Alternating and Dividing Round 2

Does it use an alternating or dividing pattern? Write your answer on the line.

Your Parents Worksheet

Your Parents

Think about your parents. Are they a lot alike? Or a case of opposites attract? Using an alternating pattern, write a paragraph that both compares and contrasts them.

Venn Comparison Worksheet

Venn Comparison

Compare the robots we set in front of you.

Works of Dickens Worksheet

Works of Dickens

Identify at least three differences in the way that Dickens describes the old men. Then write two versions of a paragraph in which you contrast the passages. In the first version, use the alternating pattern of contrasting. In the second version, use the dividing method of contrasting.

All Cats Worksheet

All Cats Are Not the Same

Based on the two paragraphs, the way domestic cats and tigers are alike are?

Great Teachers Worksheet

Two Great Teachers

Based on the two paragraphs, how are Mrs. Weathers and Mrs. Henry alike and different?

Keeping in Touch Worksheet

Keeping in Touch

Based on the two paragraphs, how are paper greeting cards and electronic cards alike and different?

Dragonflies and Birds Worksheet

Dragonflies and Birds

List three things that birds eat that dragonflies do not.

Grandparents Worksheet

Grandparents

Who would enjoy a day of lying on the creek bank enjoying the sunshine?

Apples and Oranges Worksheet

Comparing Apples and Oranges

Why is the navel orange the most popular for eating?

How Do You Compare and Contrast Something?

Confused about what the differences of these terms?

If yes, then you are not alone.

It is very common in academic writing to compare and contrast sets of content. In simpler words, it means to pinpoint differences and similarities. The main purpose of doing so is to analyze content critically. It also helps to summarize two separate sets of information in one single place.

For starters, in order to understand how you can compare and contrast something, it's essential to learn about the general content format that writers follow; thesis statement, main body, and conclusion.

Write the Thesis Statement

In its simplest form, it's a summary of what the coming discussion entails. It gives the reader an overview of what you will be working on.

A thesis statement allows the writer to, in one line, explain what the upcoming discussion will be. Over here, one should state the two or more things that will undergo a comparison.

The thesis statement should be concise and clear and not discuss any details.

Write the Main Body

The main body holds the actual discussion.

Over here, the writer focuses on the differences and similarities between the contents. It is also important to notice that this part has no specific structure. Some write down the similarities before the differences. While some do the opposite, others write alternating between the two.

Regardless of the structure the writer chooses, the comparison is essential.

For example, what to do when comparing and contrasting two cities? Discuss the varying locations, populations, time zones, and weather as the differences, and the cultures, shops, and food joints as the similarities.

The main body helps establish how two or more things are similar or how they differentiate from one another.

The Conclusion

The last part of this discussion is the conclusion.

This involves a short critique of the comparison made. Usually, it helps to establish which of the options would be better. At other times, it only gives a summarized version of the comparison.

The conclusion should still depict a proper ending for the discussion.

Tricks to Compare and Contrast

The most famous trick to compare and contrast is using creative transition words.

What are transition words?

They are words (or phrases) used to alternate between different topics that help keep the writing flow intact while ensuring the reader does not get lost. Also, these are different for both comparing and contrasting.

Some examples of transition words for comparing include: similar to and likewise.

In contrast, transition words such as alternatively and on the other hand are used.

Another tip would be to use visual representations, such as tables and graphs, for numerical comparison and contrast. A visual representation allows the reader to go through the content with ease while helping in better retention due to precise and concise information.

Wrapping Up

Writing to compare and contrast might seem daunting, but it isn't. Keeping a few tips in mind makes it quite simple to achieve a well-structured comparison.