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Friday, November 14, 2008

ESL Teacher Blog: Let’s Play Scrabble!

What would you do on a stormy weather day when instead of a full-size class only a bunch of students show up?

What would you do on a last day of school when there’s still an hour left till the potluck?

How would you make the last day of the week (e.g. Friday) more exciting, relaxing and less formal?

I’d bring a few sets of Scrabble with me!

This simple yet versatile board game doesn’t only teach spelling and vocabulary, but is also a great social activity. The objective of the game is to form words from the lettered tiles by placing them on a grid in a way that gives the highest score possible. Played in pairs or groups of four, the game naturally triggers player cooperation, develops negotiation and dictionary skills and brings a lot of fun!

Once the students get the hang of the rules, they look forward to the next time they can play it again. I personally think I should be rewarded by the retailers selling the game as too many of my students ran to buy the game right after they played it in class!

Scrabble days can be organized for students of the same level of English (beginner, intermediate and advanced). The winners from each class can then play against the winners from a different class creating healthy competition and providing plenty opportunities for social interactions.

Playing Scrabble on a regular basis can the fastest way to ensure students know word formations (e.g.: -ous for adjectives, -ly for adverbs), prefixes and suffixes (re-, im- or –tion, -ive), homonyms (ate, eight), past and past participle forms, spelling rules for adding –ing/-ed to the verbs and more!

Considering the low cost of the game, it’s definitely worth having it in your teacher arsenal!
POSTED BY Olga Galperin AT 10:45 PM
Monday, May 31, 2010 AT 10:23 AM
Marcellus said:
is it a good idea fro conversation groups?

Monday, May 31, 2010 AT 8:36 PM
Olga Galperin said:
There isn't much conversation in Scrabble, just some ongoing game-related questions, e.g.: which word starts with an 'x' or has a double 'o'? It rather tests an ability to spell the words (with a limited set of letters); so knowing parts of speech (making adverbs out of adjectives), prefixes/suffixes, plural noun forms and verb conjugations get practiced a lot.

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