A crossword puzzle comprises a grid of white and black squares with a list of clues to the side that you must solve. The clues can assist you in determining the correct word, which you then write or type in the appropriate set of squares.
The words can be written across or down. Many of the words cross paths, and the letters that join them can help you guess more words.
Crossword puzzles have been around for about a century. They were first published in newspapers.
On a lazy Sunday, you might think of a crossword puzzle as a fun way to pass the time. They’re cheap (or even free with your newspaper), require only a pen and your brain, and can be played anywhere. However, you might be surprised to learn that researchers have discovered that solving crossword puzzles regularly can improve your life in a variety of ways. So have fun! And if anyone tells you that you shouldn’t spend so much time playing games, tell them about the advantages of crossword puzzles.
Where To Find Crossword Puzzles
Here are some great free crossword puzzle apps and websites:
- Crosswords 911
On the crossword 911 site, you get to play daily crossword puzzles with solutions. You also get access to crosswords from tens of publishers like the New York Times, The Guardian, and many more.
- Crossword Quiz
This one is quite different in that it uses various clue types, including pictures, word descriptions, and even emojis! And, the images can help you “think” in English.
- Penny Dell Crossword Puzzles
This app has three difficulty levels and provides three free crosswords per day. Enjoy!
- Free Crossword Puzzle – Redstone
This app has helpful features such as offering suggestions if you get stuck and completing each puzzle.
Benefits Of Playing Crossword
They broaden your knowledge
When you solve crossword puzzles regularly, you will not only learn new words, but you will also learn new things in general, primarily if you work with others to solve challenging puzzles. Most crossword puzzles include a wide range of trivia. You might learn something new about history, entertainment, science, technology, politics, and other topics.
They help strengthen social bonds
Solving a crossword puzzle on your own is impressive, but asking for assistance is never a bad idea. Working together on a crossword puzzle is a great way to strengthen your bonds and meet new people. Crossword puzzles require a wide range of knowledge, so people of all ages and backgrounds can assist. So, the next time you’re stumped on a clue, don’t be afraid to ask the person next to you for assistance.
They can help with stress relief
Our daily lives are filled with stressors: medical challenges, the deaths of loved ones, financial problems, social problems, general lifestyle changes, and so on. Crossword puzzles allow you to tune out the noise in your head and truly relax.
They help you expand your vocabulary
Crossword puzzle clues and answers frequently include uncommon words to make the puzzle more challenging. If you don’t know what a word means, look it up on the internet or in a dictionary. You’ll amass a library of interesting new words over time.
How Can Crossword Puzzles Help You Improve Your English?
Crossword puzzles test your ability to guess and spell words based on clues. This is great for expanding your vocabulary (learning new words) and even better for recalling and applying your existing vocabulary! After all, this is how your brain needs to use vocabulary: thinking of a concept or meaning and then retrieving the appropriate word. Retrieval practice is critical for embedding new words in your memory over time and allowing you to recall them in new situations.
Reading the clues and calculating the answer is also good reading practice. Also, if you don’t know a word but can think of one in your native language based on the clue, pull out a dictionary and see if you can figure out the English word. You may need to translate from your language to the basic English word with the same meaning, then use a thesaurus to find the correct English word with the same meaning. Make use of Oxford Learner’s Dictionaries or Dictionary.Com’s thesaurus. You’ve just learned a new word, so congrats! Make a note of it and its corresponding clue in your notebook, learning diary, and preferred flashcard app.
When English students practice their vocabulary, they may do gap-fill or multiple-choice exercises. These can be extremely useful.
Gap-fill exercises can significantly improve your ability to use English words in context. At the same time, multiple-choice questions are beneficial to memory.
However, doing a crossword puzzle requires a little more brainpower. To find the correct word, you must conduct detective work and use your cognitive abilities. Without a doubt, excellent practice.
Crossword puzzles are more complex than gap-fill or multiple-choice exercises, but they will help propel your vocabulary skills into orbit.
Crossword puzzles are an excellent way to improve your vocabulary.
Once you’ve mastered gap-fill exercises and multiple-choice questions, it’s time to move on to critical and advanced cognitive thinking.
That is where you can use crosswords to help you.
If crossword puzzles aren’t your thing, try a similar brain-challenging game like Sudoku or Scrabble. Although they do not provide the same benefits as crossword puzzles, they have some advantages and can put your brain to the test in new ways.