Confused Words and Homophones: Writing Skills Success Practice Exercises

Updated on Aug 25, 2011

Review the lesson for Confused Words and Homophones: Writing Skills Success Study Guide.

Practice Exercises

Practice Exercise: Simple but Tricky Homophones

Circle the correct word in the parentheses. Answers can be found at the end of the exercise.

  1. Would you run (by, buy) the store on your way home to (by, buy) a gallon of milk?
  2. The best (by, buy) in the store is that new book written (by, buy) the famous talk show host. You should (by, buy) it.
  3. My (deer, dear) friend and I saw five (deer, dear) in my backyard.
  4. If you want to change the color of that shirt, you can (die, dye) it.
  5. The rosebush started to (die, dye) soon after we planted it.
  6. I can (hear, here) the speaker much better now that I am sitting (hear, here).
  7. The (hole, whole) fl ood began by water leaking through a (hole, whole) in the pipe.
  8. I just (knew, new) the (knew, new) toaster would be a good as my old one.
  9. I didn't (know, no) that that you had (know, no) idea how to get to the restaurant.
  10. We asked to (meat, meet) the chef so we could tell her how much we enjoyed the (meat, meet) dish we ordered.
  11. The undefeated varsity baseball team (one, won) the game by only (one, won) point.
  12. I (seam, seem) to remember that the tailor did a fl awless job repairing the (seam, seem) on my coat.

Practice Exercise: Often Used and Misused Homophones

Circle the correct word in the parentheses. The answers can be found at the end of the exercise.

  1. Ms. Wallace interviewed each candidate twice to (choose, chose) the best person for the job.
  2. Although it was hard to (choose, chose), Tabitha (choose, chose) the chocolate cake with the raspberry filling over the white cake with strawberry filling.
  3. After the (loose, lose, loss) of her job, she began to (loose, lose, loss) confidence.
  4. The shoes she ordered from the catalogue were too (loose, lose, loss).
  5. I can tell when I (loose, lose, loss) weight because my pants get (loose, lose, loss).
  6. It's 7:30; aren't you (suppose, supposed) to be at the airport by 8:00?
  7. I waited until I'd collected more (then, than) enough donations, and (then, than) I contacted the director of the homeless shelter.
  8. We (use, used) to buy (use, used) records whenever we went to thrift stores, but now we have no (use, used) for them.
  9. You are (suppose, supposed) to enjoy your vacation (weather, whether) or not the (weather,whether) is beautiful.

Practice Exercise: Killer a's and al's

Circle the correct word in the parentheses. The answers can be found at the end of the exercise.

  1. Surely you didn't (accept, except, expect) Weldon to (accept, except, expect) responsibility for this decision when everyone (accept, except, expect) him was consulted.
  2. (Accept, Except, Expect) for Mr. Nelson, Mrs. Lawrence didn't (accept, except, expect) anyone else to (accept, except, expect) the committee's costly construction proposal.
  3. The soothsayer will (advice, advise) you to seek her (advice, advise) often.
  4. The new work schedule (affected, effected) production in a positive way.
  5. How will this new work schedule (affect, effect) production?
  6. What (affect, effect) will this new work schedule have on production?
  7. We plan to tour the (capital, capitol) building whenever we visit a state's (capital, capitol) city.
  8. The (personnel, personal) information you submit to (personnel, personal) will be kept strictly confidential.
  9. The employees' (principal, principle) concern is workload.
  10. The (principle, principal) of the school is a man of great (principle, prinicpal).


  1. by, buy
  2. buy, by, buy
  3. dear, deer
  4. dye
  5. die
  6. hear, here
  7. whole, hole
  8. knew, new
  9. know, no
  10. meet, meat
  11. won, one
  12. seem, seam
  13. choose
  14. choose, chose
  15. loss, lose
  16. loose
  17. lose, loose
  18. supposed
  19. than, then
  20. used, used, use
  21. supposed, whether, weather
  22. expect, accept, except
  23. except, expect, accept
  24. advise, advice
  25. affected
  26. affect
  27. effect
  28. capitol, capital
  29. personal, personnel
  30. principal
  31. principal, principle
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