A solid command of appropriate vocabulary words is required to do well on the Verbal Reasoning and Reading Comprehension sections of the ISEE. All of the Verbal Reasoning questions center around the student’s ability to recognize vocabulary words, and each Reading Comprehension passage contains roughly 1 vocabulary question.
The following vocabulary list contains about 640 words, each paired with a definition that gives the essence of the word. Note that the provided definition might not be the only definition, but is the one we think you’re most likely not to know already or will need to know for the ISEE. When your curiosity is piqued, you should absolutely look up a word in the dictionary to see all of its various meanings and contextual usage!
This list is for the ISEE Lower Level (applying to grades 5&6). We also have a list for Middle Level (7&8) and Upper Level (9-12).
How to Use this List
- Create Flashcards. While we have already presented the cards in a digital flash card style that you can easily tap or click, research shows that actually making the cards yourself helps significantly with memory retention.
- Group words by definition. Once you’ve created your flash cards, try creating groups of words that have similar meanings. For example, you could have a group called “Friendly” with words like “amiable,” “amicable,” and “affable.”
- Write sentences using each word. Simply knowing the definition of a word is of little value if you don’t know how to use it in context. For words that have multiple meanings, try to write a sentence for each definition.
The words are presented in alphabetical order. Each group contains approximately thirty words. Simply tap or click on the word to see its definition on the flip side.