Collaborate (v) – To work together on project or idea
Helpful Hints: Collab, the BHS literary magazine, gets its name for this word, as it is a collaboration between the school’s artists and writers. Support your peers. Buy a Collab.
You May Remember: The root “co” means with or together, from freshman year. Thus, to collaborate is to “work” “together.”
Sample Sentence: The members of the police force collaborated to come up with possible ways of subduing the criminal before entering the house.
Belabor (v) – To explain something in excess, to continue more than is needed
Synonym: Over-explain, Dwell on, Harp on
Sample Sentence: The coach never belabored his points in his speeches; he gave his criticism quickly and then moved on to the next point.
PARA Beyond, Beside
Paramount (adj) – Chief in importance or impact; Supreme
Synonym: Critical, Dominant
Antonyms: Unimportant, Trivial
Helpful Hints: Paramount Pictures named their company that because they believe they are the best.
Sample Sentence: It is paramount that you complete your research paper in order to graduate.
Paradigm (n) – 1. a model that can be copied 2. a theory or belief about how something should be done, created or viewed; a theoretical framework
Synonyms: 1. Pattern, Template, Exemplar, Archetype; 2. Framework
Helpful Hints: Paradigm suggests a copiable example or pattern (to show side by side).
You May Remember: An archetype is the original pattern or model from which all things of the same kind are copied or on which they are based, from freshman year.
Sample Sentence: It is paramount that you complete your research paper in order to graduate. Apple’s invention of the iPad created a new paradigm for computing.
Sample Sentence: Contemporary educational paradigms suggest that the teacher should be “the guide on the side”; rather than lecturing to students, teachers should enable students to think critically and draw their own conclusions.
FORE Before, Toward
Foreboding (n) – An inner feeling, usually a negative one, about some future event
Helpful Hints: “bode” means to be a sign of a future event, as in the storm clouds do not bode well for our picnic. Foreboding is that sense of ill fortune ahead of time.
Sample Sentence: The black funnel cloud in the distance gave the townspeople a feeling of foreboding as the storm raged on.
Foresee (v) – to know in advance; to be aware of beforehand
Synonym: predict, anticipate, forecast
Helpful Hints: The word suggests one’s ability to “see” something before it happens. Whereas “foreknow” usually deals with supernatural knowledge of future events, “foresee” generally suggests anticipating future events based on logic and experience.
Sample Sentence: Having been in the class for a year, Sarah was able to foresee her teacher’s questions and adjust her project accordingly.
CAP / CAPIT Head
Capricious (adj) – likely to change suddenly and frequently; ruled by impulse or whim
Synonym: Unstable, Fickle, Temperamental, Whimsical
Antonym: Stable, Steady, Predictable, Immutable
Helpful Hint: Capricious can be used to describe a person’s nature, such as “The capricious child hugged me one moment but threw a tantrum the next.” Capricious can also describe the unpredictable nature of things, as in “The capricious wind made it impossible to navigate the boat.” Do not confuse this “cap” with the “cap / cept” from freshman year meaning to take or seize.
Sample Sentence: Thomas opted not to go to a jury trial, noting that sympathy could not be guaranteed in the hands of capricious jurors.
Recapitulate (v) to summarize at the end of a conversation or speech
Synonyms: Restate, Reiterate, Recap, Review
Helpful Hint: To go through the main points (headings) again. Usually, a speaker will recapitulate the main points of his argument at the conclusion of his speech.
You May Remember: You learned “re,” meaning again, freshman year.
Sample Sentence: Takeko recapitulated her top three reasons for integrating a recycling program at BHS.
CURR / CURS Course, Run
Currency (n) – 1. Widespread acceptance 2. Something used as a medium of exchange, money
Synonyms: 1. Prevalence, Circulation, Acceptance; 2. Cash, Legal Tender
Helpful Hints: You sometimes hear of ideas gaining currency, which means that they are becoming more accepted or more commonly held (or coursing the globe).
You May Remember: You have seen the root “curs” in freshman year in the word “precursor,” meaning fore-runner, as in iPhones were the precursor to iPads.
Sample Sentence: Hitler’s beliefs in racial “purity” and the supremacy of the Aryan race gained currency through the spread of propaganda.
Sample Sentence: When we went to Italy we had to exchange our money and figure out how to pay using their country’s currency.
Cursory (adj) – Hasty; Going over something quickly without paying attention to detail
Synonym: Hasty, Rushed, Precipitious
Antonym: Thorough, Painstaking, Unhurried
Sample Sentence: I got a low grade on my vocabulary quiz because of my cursory studying the night before; I only looked at my words one time.
VAL / VALI / VALU Worth, Strength
Validate (v) – To confirm
Synonym: Prove, Substantiate, Corroborate, Verify
Antonym: Disprove, Refute, Rebut, Nullify
Helpful Hints: When you validate your parking, you are confirming that you were at the location that is providing the discount
Sample Sentence: When the stock’s price fell by 60%, it validated Sandra’s concerns that the company was struggling.
Valor (n) – Heroic bravery
Synonym: Courage, Intrepidity, Dauntlessness
Antonym: Cowardice, Spinelessness, Cravenness
Helpful Hints: The government presents the Medal of Valor to people who bravely serve the country
Sample Sentence: Although the former general didn’t brag, his whole family knew about his valor on the battlefield, and how he his life on his line for his fellow soldiers
Synonyms: Droning, Pedestrian, Wearisome
Antonyms: Exciting, Lively
Helpful Hints: The difference between “pedestrian” and “monotonous” is that something pedestrian is boring because it is uncreative or commonplace. Something monotonous is boring because it never changes. So a music group that is pedestrian doesn’t take any risks with their music and does what is expected and safe. A monotonous band never changes their style, and sound the same all the time.
Sample Sentence: The Poetry Out Loud performance lost points because of the student’s monotonous delivery, which buried the meaning of the lines of the poem.
-OUS Full of, Having
Ostentatious (adj) – Characterized by an over-the-top showiness that is meant to impress
Synonyms: Showy, Grandiose
Antonyms: Simple, Humble
Helpful Hints: My Super Sweet 16 is a show that displays the ostentatious parties of the children on the program.
Sample Sentence: The wedding was an ostentatious display of the wealthy family, complete with the couple riding in on a camel.
Deleterious (adj) – Harmful
Synonyms: Injurious, Destructive
Antonyms: Helpful, Beneficial
Sample Sentence: Medical commercials must legally disclose the potentially deleterious side-effects of the pill they are promoting
POSIT / POSE / PONE Put, Place
Juxtaposition (n) – The state of being side by side or close together
Helpful Hints: This word is almost always used to show a contrast between two things, not just to indicate that two things are close to one another. If you talked about the juxtaposition of two scenes in a story, you are not just pointing out that they come one after another, but that there is something radically different about the second scene.
Sample Sentence: The juxtaposition of the two genres of music in the same song was surprisingly pleasant.
Proponent (n) – A supporter of a cause
Synonyms: Advocate, Enthusiast
Antonyms: Opponent, Naysayer
Helpful Hint: A proponent “places” herself in favor of a cause.
Sample Sentence: Ever since losing their son in the war, the family became strong proponents of bringing soldiers home from overseas.