Chess Openings For Dummies
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Word searches are fun once you get the low-down on how to solve them. They also bring benefits you may not realize and can play an important role in keeping you mentally fit. After you've mastered solving word searches, you can stretch your brain another way and try composing your own.

How to solve a word search puzzle

If you already have a solving method for word search puzzles that works for you, consider adding it to the following list. In the meantime, give some of these tips a try:

  • Scan back and forth along each row of the letter grid, looking for the first letter in a word. Also scan up and down each column of the grid.

  • Use a finger or the (capped) end of your pen or pencil to help guide your search.

  • Do a circle search around letters to see whether they lead on to the next letter in the word you’re looking for.

  • Use a highlighter pen or light-colored pencil if you want to mark on top of the words you find. Otherwise, use a pen or pencil to draw loops around the words.

  • Search for less-common letters in a word, such as J, B, K, Q, X, Y, or Z. This strategy makes the rest of the word easier to find.

  • Search the grid for the double letters in a list word.

  • Look for circular letters, especially O, D, and Q.

  • If you see a Q in the grid with no adjacent U, you probably don’t need to follow it any further.

  • Cross off the words in the list as you find them.

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