What would you do if your teacher told you to stop using the word "nice" so much? If you had the Scholastic Children's Thesaurus, you'd flip through it until you found "nice" between "new" and "noise." Then you'd find your options: "pleasant," "agreeable," "good-natured," "delightful," and "fantastic" (defined as "extremely nice or good!"). Nearby, a color bar warns, "Nice is a very general word to describe someone you like or something that makes you feel good, but it is not very specific. Be careful not to overuse it. Often a stronger or more specific word is better." At this point, you might be rolling your eyes because your teacher already said all that, but you'll be a more pleasant, agreeable, good-natured, delightful, and fantastic writer for your efforts!
John K. Bollard's thesaurus, playfully illustrated by Mike Reed, contains more than 500 main "headwords" and 2,500 synonyms, but if you can't find the word you're looking for—"energetic," for example—you can flip to the index in the back where you'll find "Energetic—See Lively." Lively leads you to "active," "energetic," and "vigorous." All synonyms include a definition as well as one or more sample sentences. This fine thesaurus—paired with the Scholastic Children's Dictionary—will help any young writer make appropriate word choices, think more critically about language, and therefore proceed to the head of the class!
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