Pat writes about root words in numerous books. She writes the activity up on pages 166-169 in Phonics They Use, version 5.
Procedure by Pat:
1. Write the word play on the board. 2. Tell students that a little word like play can become a big word when parts are added to the beginning and to the ending of the word. 3. Write words that have play in them. 4. Have the words pronounced and talk about how the meaning of the word changes. 5. Have students suggest other words with play: play, playing, misplay, playfully, ballplayer, playhouse, playful, playoff, playing, playable, outplay, playpen, player, overplay, playwright, players, playfulness, playground, screenplay