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Wow! Let’s Learn about Palindromes

Words needn’t be used only for communicating—they can be fun to play with, too! And the more fun that students have with words, the likelier they’ll be to enjoy reading, writing, and learning. One of the more amusing examples of wordplay is palindromes.

Read on to learn more about palindromes and discover some amazing examples!


What Is a Palindrome?

Take a look at the sentence below.

Was it a car or a cat I saw?

Did you notice anything special? How about the words below?

  • mom
  • dad
  • noon

These are all examples of palindromes. Palindromes are words or phrases that are read the same forward and backward. Look again at the examples above, and notice how the order of the letters is the same backward as it is forward.

The History of Palindromes

The word palindrome comes from the Greek words palin, which means “again,” and dromos, which means “direction.” Historians have found that Ancient Greeks started having fun with palindromes over 2,000 years ago! However, the Ancient Greeks didn’t actually call them palindromes. They described these words and phrases as “crab-like”—because crabs regularly walk both forward and backward.

More Palindromes

Check out these other examples of palindromes!

One-Word Palindromes

  • mom
  • dad
  • noon
  • kayak

Multi-Word Palindromes

  • my gym
  • top spot
  • taco cat
  • evil olive

Phrase Palindromes

  • Madam, I’m Adam.
  • Never odd or even.
  • Eva, can I see bees in a cave?

Name Palindromes

  • Ava
  • Elle
  • Otto
  • Hannah

Fun with Palindromes

It’s time to let your students get creative and have some fun with palindromes! Start with one-word palindromes, and then progress to longer ones. Remember: The palindromes don’t need to make sense—but you get extra points if they do!

Be sure to share your students’ best palindromes in the comments below!

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Julie

says:

This is great!! I can’t wait to show my kids. They will love this and hopefully it will excite my reluctant learner.

Robin

says: Customer Service

Julie,
Palindromes are a lot of fun, and it takes some close paying attention to find them in the wild.

Tina

says:

I never knew this and I love it. Definitely pinning and printing and sharing with my children

Robin

says: Customer Service

Glad we helped you learn something new, Tina!

Annalisa

says:

I love this especially for the end of the school year when the students are pretty much done with academics. This is a fun way to learn!

Robin

says: Customer Service

What a great idea, Annalisa! It’ll be a great way to end the year with engagement.

Donald

says:

I do this with car registration numbers: 27372 can become 72327, 939, 14341, 41314.

Robin

says: Customer Service

Donald,
One of my sons enjoys finding number palindromes “in the wild” wherever they pop up!

Lennetta Gray-Brewton

says:

This was fun!! I had forgotten all about palindromes!!! learning something for all age groups.

Robin

says: Customer Service

Thank you, Lennetta!

Christine

says:

Thank you for sharing. They are great.

Robin

says: Customer Service

You’re welcome, Christine. Thank you.

Colette

says:

Just ordered All About Homophones to use as a summer program with my 11 year old granddaughter. The palindromes will be fun to add to our wordplay.
Thank you for your very clever ideas.

Robin

says: Customer Service

You’re welcome, Colette! Enjoy!

Mechell

says:

This is so fun!! Looking forward to using it with my boys. Thank you

Robin

says: Customer Service

Mechell,
You’re welcome. Enjoy!

Sara Sharer

says:

Just love having all these palindromes in one place! Thank you.

Ashley

says:

Great ideas! Palindromes are fun to play around with!

Robin

says: Customer Service

Ashley,
I agree! Palindromes are so fun. One of my sons has a taco cat t-shirt!