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6 of the best online vocabulary games for KS3 and KS4 English

Boost secondary students' lexicons and word skills with some fun, free-to-play interactive games...

  • 6 of the best online vocabulary games for KS3 and KS4 English

1 | Boggle

There are quite a few versions of the classic Boggle game online, so you might find one that works better for you, but this one has the benefit of being able to turn off the timer if you want to, and allowing students to either type in the words or click the letters on the board.

That might seem a trivial bonus, but typing is great for getting lots of answers down quickly, but actually clicking the letters lets you explore possible avenues better, which seems to result in finding longer words hidden in the jumble.

It also offers you all possible solutions afterwards. So have dictionaries handy so you can answer: “What the hell is ‘pshawed’?” (Uttered an expression of disapproval apparently. Like tutting I guess.)

If you’re after a downloadable Boggle resource you can play with your class, we’ve got this handy vocab starter game PowerPoint from Kat Howard you can try.

Give the online game a go here.

2 | Word unscramble

This is a simple letter jumble game, but the beauty is that it has three difficulty settings and over 100 topics to choose from.

So you can focus on things like animals, chemistry, compound words, countries, musical instruments. It is a US site, however, so there may be some American spellings occasionally in certain topics.

Check it out here.

3 | Name every preposition

Sporcle is one of the best quiz sites around. Quizzes are user submitted, so vary in quality, but if you stick to ones that have been Sporcle verified (this means the site admins have selected it to get promoted on the home page at some point) or unverified ones that have a good user rating, you can’t go far wrong.

There are loads of vocabulary ones you can find with a quick search (or just click here) that challenge you to match the correct definition to a group of words, all beginning with a certain letter, for example, or all having the same number of letters.

One of our favourites is naming every preposition. They’re listed in alphabetical order, which helps, but it’s still harder than you’d think.

See how many you can get here.

4 | Analogy match

This 10-question quiz not only gets students to think about the definition of words, but their relationship to each other, and how they’re used in context.

Test your word knowledge here.

5 | Word Wipe

Word Wipe is somewhere between Boggle and Tetris, where you have to connect letters to make words, in order to clear the blocks and bring the lines down. It’s super fun and addictive, so students are sure to enjoy.

Try it here, just be sure to keep an eye on how much time you’ve been playing.

6 | Text twist

More anagram fun here. With each level you’re given a number of letters and have to make as many words as you can out of them. The main aim though is to find the one biggest word available to advance to the next round.

Play this one here.

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