I love crossword puzzles even though I'm terrible at them. Except for the ones in People Magazine - I kick butt at those! But when it comes to The New York Times Sunday Crossword - I call it a success if I can complete half!
Doing high-quality crossword puzzles is a fun way to learn SAT, ACT, or GRE vocabulary words.
The people who design crossword puzzles - also known as cruciverbalists - are the ultimate logophiles. They love sticking in fun and often obscure words (also known as SAT/ACT/GRE vocabulary words!) whenever and wherever they can.
More importantly, cruciverbalists also love to include lesser-known secondary definitions of commonly-used words - e.g., canvas, bear, abandon - which incidentally, is what test makers love to test on the SAT/ACT/GRE too!
So the next time you're looking for a fun study break, try doing a crossword puzzle with a group of friends. You can do them solo of course, but doing them with a few buddies really speeds up the process, it's a great learning experience, and honestly, it's also just a lot more fun.
In college, I worked at the local performing arts theater. Each night, while we were waiting for the show to finish, all the student ushers would gather together to tackle the morning's New York Times Crossword.
We'd sit around a table and people would shout out answers as they thought of them. With our collective knowledge, we usually took fewer than ten minutes to complete the crossword and I learned so much from everyone else - things I would NEVER have learned on my own.
So give it a try! Start with today's New York Times Crossword.
Need some tips on how to get started?
- HowStuffWorks: Top 10 Tips for Solving Crossword Puzzles
- Dummies.com: Tips for Solving Crossword Puzzles
- About.com: Novice or Sophomore - Become A Better Solver
- NYTimes: How to Solve The New York Times Crossword Puzzle
- Mahalo: How to Solve The New York Times Crossword Puzzle