Fill in the Blanks Using the Words in the Box

Fill in the blanks exercises are widely used to improve comprehension skills of children. This activity also improves their vocabulary. Struggling readers find this activity useful.

  1. How "Fill in the blanks" activity helps children?
    1. Improves imagination.

      “Fill in the blanks” exercises can take different forms. We can have exercises to complete a sentence. Here the child has to concentrate on one sentence only. Or we can have a passage with few blanks. In this case, the child has to be aware of the main idea of the passage. The link between sentences should be understood. The flow of ideas or information has to be grasped. One also should be good enough to predict what would happen next. It is a challenging task even when options are given to fill in the blanks. It becomes more challenging when clues are not given.

      This activity helps to activate areas of the brain relating to language. Puzzles stimulate the brain. “Fill in the blanks” activity triggers both the language and intuitive areas of the brain. It is an excellent medium to improve the power of imagination.

    2. Improves the skill of using context clues.

      When we come across some unknown words, we don’t rush to a dictionary. Instead, we try to make out the meaning of the word using the context clues. We use our instincts to understand what the writer wants to say and we look for the clues in the sentences. This activity of “Fill in the blanks” encourages children to use the context to get the meaning of words.

      Regular practice of activities such as Sentence Strips, Unscramble Sentence, Fill in the blanks make children effective readers.

    3. Improves vocabulary and comprehension skills

      No reading activity is a waste. Children are exposed to a variety of ideas when they do the ‘Fill in the blanks’ activity. Doing these exercises would definitely influence their vocabulary and comprehension skills. An effective reader can write better. A limited vocabulary impacts listening skills. A good vocabulary is required to follow what the teacher says. A limited vocabulary leads to lesser comprehension and this leads to the mind drifting away. Vocabulary and comprehension skills are necessary for effective note taking and for storing facts and information in the long term memory. In short activities such as ‘Fill in the blanks’ indirectly helps to perform better in examinations.

      In this lesson, two sentences are given and these sentences have some ideas in common. The child grasps these ideas to do the exercises in this lesson.

  2. How is this game organized?
  3. Two sentences are shown with one word missing from each sentence. Mostly, the sentences have a common theme. Four options are given. The challenge is to choose the right options.

    Sections of this activity:

    This activity is designed for children studying up to the fourth standard. Only basic words are used. There are eight sections. The sections are:




    Basic exercise


    Verbs part one


    Verbs part two


    Making questions


    General part one


    General part two


    Adjectives part one


    Adjectives part two

    Each section has 25 questions. Struggling readers don’t understand the questions and this is one of the reasons why they fail to score good marks. To take care of this issue, there is a separate section on making questions.

This activity has eight sections. There are only 25 problems in each exercise. Your child requires more practice. Prepare more exercises and let your child do these exercises regularly. Ideas can be borrowed from the child’s text books, story books, or you can make your own sentences. You can access a variety of sentences from .

Tips for parents:

  1. Teach your child parts of speech.

    Your child can be a better reader and writer if she/ he is aware of the parts of speech. A thorough understanding of what is noun, adjective, verb and adverb helps the child to use language purposefully. Use of the right prepositions is a challenge even for the best of learners. Make your child understand the sequence of parts of speech in a sentence.

    There are exercises in this lesson based on verbs and adjectives.

  2. Teach your child tenses.

    Correct use of tenses is required for effective communication. Children use tenses correctly when speaking or writing their mother tongue. But they get confused about the use of the tenses when using English. A mismatch of tenses is a common mistake made by children learning English as a foreign language.Spend time with your children to make them proficient in the use of tenses.

  3. Use dictionaries.

    English Is a universal language and expertise in English is required to do well in higher studies and to get well paying jobs. A good dictionary is a must to teach children English. Initially, children can use pocket dictionaries. But parents can start using dictionaries meant for advanced students. Encourage them to use the dictionary. Some parents don’t know how to use a dictionary. If you don’t know how to use a dictionary take help. Unfortunately, children are not taught how to use a dictionary in schools.

  4. Mastery activity:

    Have your child prepare tests for you!Encourage them to use a wide range of materials – newspapers, magazines, textbooks, storybooks, etc to prepare the tests. They can also access the internet. Preparing questions for you is itself a great learning experience.

    Let her/ him correct your answers.

  5. Have a point system to motivate learning:

    You can award points to your child when she/he completes a learning task. The accumulated points can be used to buy your child what she/ he wants. Decide in consultation with your child what the child wants and how many points are to be earned for it. A point system may motivate your child to put in more efforts.

There are many sites offering ‘fill in the blanks’ exercises which can be downloaded free.

Text books and story books can be used to prepare tests.