An Introduction to Affixes

An affix is something that is added to a root word, either at the beginning or the end. Something added to beginning is called a prefix. Something added to the end is called a suffix.

Let’s take a look at how affixes change the meaning of the word. Let’s use the word employ.

Employ is a verb which means to hire or use. Businesses employ workers.

Employed is the Past Simple of employ. The business employed 5 workers last year.
Employed is also an adjective. My friend is employed.

Employment is a noun, it is about having a job. People need employment to earn money to live.

Unemployment is the opposite, it is about not having jobs. Unemployment is a big problem.

An employer is the person who employs. Camila’s employer didn’t pay her this month.

An employee is the person who works. Tom is an employee for the company.

Try out this game to see if you can discover the suffixes by yourself!