This game is based on Scrabble and you are dealt seven tiles to begin each game. You receive double and/or triple points for both letters and words. Also, you have to begin the game by placing a letter over the central star. Currently I'm using the FREE version that's on offer. The major difference between this and the paid version is ADVERTISING. The cost for the no advertising version is $2.99 (US). Well worth it to be rid of the pesky ads. Even though I am slightly addicted to this game, I do have a couple of issues:
> it accepts words that are actually acronyms e.g. BO; and,
> the use of nonexistent words e.g. laked (which scored a triple word score for my cousin, not happy). All that aside, this game offers your learners a great tool for practising spelling.
To set up the class or a group to play, follow these few steps.
1. They will all need to download the game onto a device e.g. mobile/cell phone or iPad.
2. Once they have registered, their User Names will be available for class/group members and public to access.
3. Students can establish a roster of playing partners. It would be good for all class or group members to play each other. They can also record their scores to be used in -
> graphing activities;
> finding the mean, mode and median of their scores;
> ranking all players top and lowest scores;
> finding the difference between highest and lowest scores; and,
> recording scores for each word and graphing top 5 scores.
4. I strongly recommend that your students use a dictionary or they could use the Words With Friends Cheat web site to assist them. If a word is unacceptable a message appears to that affect and players get another opportunity to change spelling etc.
Once your students are up and running with the game you can introduce other learning activities to broaden their experience.
> List strategies they use to determine where they place their letters. Discuss these with other players to develop and/or refine their strategies.
> Write a review of the game (hard copy or online). Include suggestions that may improve the game.
> Write an email to the developers that expresses learners' opinion/s of the game.
> Class survey that considers-
a. players' understanding of the game;
b. players' level of enjoyment (use a Likert scale question); and,
c. players' use of options i.e. Shuffle and Swap.
> Record the initial letters from the start of any game and see how many words they can make using these letters.
> Record words that they and their playing partner use in a game. Tick the known words and find the meanings for unknown words.
> Use words in sentences.
> Tweet the word and meaning.
> Word building using prefixes and suffixes.
One major advantage of this APP over the board game is the ease with which people can access the game while simultaneously improving their spelling skills. Now, it's all up to you and your learners to make the most of this FREE learning tool.
Don't turn those phones off. Use them to your advantage.