The following collection of worksheets will teach your students how to use a dictionary.

Dictionaries are reference tools that provide an alphabetical listing of words and their meanings. A dictionary can have many different features that can give you a great deal of information about a word beyond just the meaning. They are useful to find the proper spelling of a word and some will show you how the word is phonetically pronounced. In many cases they provide you with a list of possible synonyms and antonyms which can be a helpful reference when you are writing. Some advanced dictionaries can indicate the level of word usage within cultural language. Certain words may also appear that are slang words to certain cultures. This is why you see the title of these books that are targeting a certain culture within the same the same language. E-books are convenient, and it is very easy to type a word into a search engine to find out what it means, but your students should still learn how to use an actual, physical dictionary.

These activity sheets will teach your students how dictionaries are formatted for use, including questions about guide words, definition priority, synonyms and antonyms, and more. Answer keys have been provided for most sheets, but answers may differ depending on the dictionary used. Fun Class Contest: Divide the class into teams for dictionary drills. Present challenges similar to the worksheet activities and see which team can complete them first!

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Print Dictionary Skills Worksheets

Click the buttons to print each worksheet and associated answer key.

Dictionary Practice

Grab one of those good ole' reference tools to help you answer the following questions.

Multiple Meanings

Some words are spelled the same, but have completely different meanings.


Did you know that you can also use them to find the meanings of these abbreviations. Write the word or words on the line.

Practicing with Your Dictionary

We get you on the front line with some really good practice on this worksheet. It gets easier as you start to practice it more.

Stress Patterns

We look at syllable classifications of words and learn their meaning too.

Irregular Past Tense

Write the irregular past tense of each verb. Check your answers, with what else?

Parts of Speech

You will need a speech classification to help you here. Determine the part of speech for each word below. There may be more than one correct answers.

Guide Words

Circle the pair of guide words you might find on a page where the bold word could be found.

Working With Guiding Words

Read each set of guide words. Underline the words you would find on that page.

Spelling and Syllables

Use a reference tool to help you divide the following words into syllables. Write each word on the line, placing a hyphen between syllables.

The Dictionary Is Full of Answers

See how well you can answer these questions when you have your favorite reference tool handy.

Decoding Unfamiliar Words

Fill in the chart for each word on this selection of words in the matrix.

Using the Dictionary

You will look up the assigned words. Fill out the chart for each word. Then use the word in a sentence.


In addition to giving you the definition of a word, the dictionary sometimes also gives synonyms for words.

Show Off

Look up the assigned words. Fill in the chart. Then use the word in a sentence.