Words with Friends

Practice and Grow English Vocabulary by Playing Words with Friends

Words with Friends

One of my favorite pass time activities when I was a kid was playing Scrabble with my aunt Frieda. We spent entire evenings playing round after round, each of us having the German word reference “Duden” to check each others words.

Besides having a lot of fun it also helped me to grow my vocabulary without noticing it. This was pure edutainment before the phrase became so popular on the Internet.

ScrabbleAnd while Scrabble helped me to grow the vocabulary of my native language, this is also true for learning a foreign language. One of the most tedious and lonesome yet essential parts language learning is growing your vocabulary. I think everyone remembers the vocabulary lists we had to cram in school or for homework. Of course there are fun new ways to learn vocabulary through games and other edutainment products it is often still a task you need to perform on your own.

The problem is of course that you would need someone who also understands at least a bit the language you want to learn. Also, each Scrabble version has a different mix of letters depending on the country or language it is produced for. The French Scrabble is slightly different from the German or English version.

Words with Friends iOSAnd here is where the Internet and Facebook comes in. Words with Friends is basically the same game as Scrabble which makes it a great tool  to practice and grow your English vocabulary with your Facebook friends. You can either play it directly on Facebook, the Zynga website or on a mobile device running iOS or Android. If you choose to connect your Facebook account to the mobile applications, you can start a game on your computer at home and then play with your friends on the way to work via your mobile phone.

You can also have multiple games going on at the same time which again boosts your vocabulary practice as you have to switch from one game to the other and find words with the different sets of letters you have in each game. This will train your “brain muscles” which is essential in fighting mental aging as new studies show.

If you are an English teacher you could play and practice vocabulary with your students. There is a chat function in the game, so students could ask if the word they want to put is correct. Of course they can also just open a second tab in their browser and use one of the free web word references or dictionaries to check.

All in all Words with Friends is a highly social and fun way to practice and grow English vocabulary. You will find all the links to the different mobile apps and the Facebook application on wordswithfriends.com

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Kay Alexander is the co-founder and review editor of Fair Languages. He is also the producer of EDUKWEST. You can follow him on Twitter, Facebook and Google+.