Boggle: Helping Kids Play
As Boggle lovers, we of course want our kids or kids we know to love Boggle too. And sometimes the best way to insure kids will love Boggle is to make allowances which level the playing field a bit and allow kids and adults to play Boggle together more fairly. The tricky thing is deciding exactly how many allowances to make and when to cut off those allowances. You want to make playing Boggle highly enjoyable, but at some point kids need to face all the Boggle challenges! In the meantime, here are some Boggle allowances which could help kids compete.
- No negatives: Enable kids to try to reach outside their comfortable word zone in Boggle by abolishing any negative scoring penalties. If kids know that they can try to use harder Boggle words with no downside, they're more likely to advance and learn through Boggle. Do make sure, however, that kids don't take advantage of the Boggle penalty-free scoring by each round reading a long list of made up words. Even the most patient parent will get tired of Boggle if they have to go through this each round!
- Points for two letter words: If your kid is young enough, let them find two letter, and maybe even one letter, Boggle words. This will help kids get used to playing Boggle and learning to form words even on this basic level. Perhaps you could also offer two points for three or four Boggle words (just as normally you would for five letter words). Bringing the Boggle scoring down a notch can help kids enjoy Boggle and strive to get better.
- Points for all words: Another way to give kids a leg up in Boggle is to let them earn points for every valid Boggle word they find (not needing to cross off a Boggle word if another player found it too). This method of Boggle scoring can be a lot more satisfying for kids. If they start beating you during each Boggle round, however, it may be time to change the Boggle rules back to normal!
- Slang words and even proper names: You could give kids a boost in Boggle by letting them find slang words and even proper names. Kids will still need to go through the normal Boggle process of word formation, but they will have a broader range of options. And then you'll also get to see what kind of slang your kids know!