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Jimbo's Blackboard Boggle

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Jim Solomon
Tokyo, Japan
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This could not be easier for you or more fun for your students. In advance fill a bag with 26 scraps of paper, each with a letter (A-Z)written on it. Now in class on the blackboard draw a large square and divide that square into 16 smaller squares (4X4). Stick your hand in the bag and shuffle the letters about, then one by one pull out a letter and place it in a square. You should start with the upper left hand square and then fill in the four squares to its right then go down to the next line. Now you are ready to play Blackboard Boggle. The students must make words from the letters in the grid on the board by connecting the letters there. So if B O Y are in a line or even if there's Y O B, and they write boy, then it counts. The letters must only connect - backwards, forwards, kitty cornered and in a box is okay - you just cannot jump over letters to make a word. I divide the class into teams and give each team a piece of paper to write the words they find. As group they look for words. As a team it helps the slower students to learn and be more comfortable. My version is similar to the board game but different in that I allow more time than the one minute of the board game and I don't need that plastic shaker tray. Since I allow even one and two letter words, the game is playable by even the lower students. After the time is up - 5 minutes is reasonable for lower kids - I go team by team asking for one word they found and I write it under their team name. Once a word is out there it can't be used by another team. The team with the most original words wins the round and is the first to give their answer in the next round. Questions? Email me.

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