There are four types of context clues: synonym, antonym, example and comparison and contrast.
Type 1: Antonym Clue
Example 1: Although Tom was anxious about the test Tina was not worried at all.
Using the antonym clue, the word anxious in this sentence above means:
A. forgetful B. worried C. calm D. not worried
Type 2: Example Clue
Example 2: Projectiles include those items that are shot forward such as a cannon shell, bullet, or rocket.
Using the example clue, the word projectiles in this sentence means:
A. things put down B. things shot forward C. things hurt D. things broken
Type 3: Synonym clue
Example 3: His rancor, or hatred, of his brother has caused him to live his life as a lonely person.
Using the synonym clue, the word rancor in this sentence means:
A. love B. generous C. tolerance D. hatred
Type 4: Explanation Clue
Example 4: We could tell by the rotten smell, that something putrid was in our trash can.
Using the explanation clue, the word putrid in this sentence means:
A. ample B. alive C. rotten D. appealing
Type 5: Comparison and Contrast Clue
Context clues that show comparison include like, as, similar, and in the same way. Contrasts may be signaled by words such as but, although, however, and on the other hand.
Sandra’s happy face was luminous, like the rays of the sun.
The clue word like in this sentence tells you that luminous means “shining” or “giving off light.”