Creating a word search game for your kids during the rainy season, to help your students learn new vocabulary, or just to entertain your bored friend, can be a lot of fun. You can make them as creative as you want--just follow these steps to learn how to make your own word search.
Method 1 of 3: Choosing the Words to Use
Step 1. Decide which theme to use in your word search game
Using a theme on your game will make it look more professional. If you make this game for kids, the theme will make the puzzle easier to understand. Examples of some themes that can be used: names of countries, names of animals, names of states, names of flowers, types of food, etc.
- If you don't want to use a theme for your word search game, you don't need to. All the words you want to use in the game depends on your choice.
- If you want to give your own word search game as a gift, you can design it especially for that person by using a theme like 'names of family members' or 'names of favorite things.'
Step 2. Choose the words to use
If you decide to use a theme, use words that fit the theme. The number of words you can use depends on the size of the checkerboard to be used. If the words you use are short, you can fit more words into your puzzle. In general, there are 10-20 words in a word search game. If you want to make this game into a fairly large puzzle, you can use more words than that number.
Some examples of words that can be used for the 'animal' theme: dog, cat, monkey, elephant, fox, sloth, horse, jellyfish, donkey, lion, tiger, bear (wow!), giraffe, panda, cow, chinchillas, meerkats, dolphins, pigs, coyotes, etc
Step 3. Find the correct spelling for each word you use
Do this, especially if you use unfamiliar words or the names of foreign countries. If you make a misspelling of a word, the person working on it will be confused (and they will likely give up on your puzzle.)
Method 2 of 3: Creating Checkered Lines
Step 1. Leave some space at the top of the page
You'll need it to write the title of your word search game once the checkerboard lines are finished. If you use a theme, you can give it a title that fits the theme. If you don't use a theme, just write 'Word Search Game' in that section.
- You can also make checkered lines using a computer. Here's how to create a checkered line using the Word 2007 version of the application and below: Select 'View' which is located at the top of the page. Select 'Toolbars' and make sure you select 'Drawing'. Click 'Draw' (looks like the letter 'A' with a cube and cylinder). Click on 'Draw' and then click on 'Grid'. A checkerboard options screen will appear--make sure you select 'Snap to Grid' and then feel free to select any other options you want to create a grid for. Click 'OK' and be the line of the boxes.
- Here's how to make a checkerboard line in the 2007 version of Word: Click on 'Page Layout' at the top of the page and click on the 'Align' option in the 'Arrange' group. Click on 'Grid settings' and make sure you select 'Snap to Grid'. Please select any other options you want to create the checkerboard line. Click 'OK' and be the line of the boxes.
Step 2. Draw the checkerboard lines yourself by hand
The easiest way to make a word search game is to use graph paper, although you don't actually have to use it. The common size for a word search game box is 10 square by 10 square. Draw a main square measuring 10cm x 10cm and then draw a line every 1cm along the square horizontally. Also draw a line at every 1cm in descending order.
You don't have to use a 10cm x 10cm master box. You can make it as big or small as you want, but keep in mind that you'll need to be able to draw little squares in it. You can also make a main square in the shape of a letter (maybe the first letter of the name of the person you're playing this game with?) or some other interesting shape
Step 3. Use a ruler when drawing the lines
Use a pencil to draw straight lines that are evenly distributed in length. You need to make smaller squares of the same size inside the main box that you have created. You can make the boxes as big or small as you want.
If you're giving this word search game to young children, consider creating larger grid lines. By making lines of large squares, the puzzle will be easier to work with because the individual squares and letters will be easier to see. If you want to make the puzzle more difficult, make the lines of the squares smaller and closer together
Method 3 of 3: Putting All the Words into the Boxes
Step 1. Make a list of the words to be used
Write the list right next to the checkerboard you have created. You can mark each word with #1, #2, and so on if you want. Write the words clearly so that the person working on this game knows exactly what word he needs to look for.
Step 2. Write all the words of your choice into the checkerboard lines
Place one letter in each of the adjacent squares. You can write the words back to front, front to back, diagonally, and in descending order. Try to spread all the words evenly across the checkerboard line. Place all the words creatively. Make sure you've written down all the words on the list so they're actually in your puzzle. The person working on it can get very confused if he looks for a word that is in the list, but it turns out that the word is not in the puzzle box.
You may need to write the letters larger or smaller, depending on who you are giving the puzzle to. If you want to make the puzzle easy, for example if you are giving it to a small child, you may want to consider writing the letters in larger letters. If you want the puzzle to be more challenging, write the letters smaller
Step 3. Create an answer key
As soon as you finish writing all the words into the checkerboard lines, photocopy and mark each word. This sheet will serve as an answer key, so that anyone who has completed the puzzle can check if their answer is correct (or can help those who are having trouble finding a word) without being bothered by the extra letters you randomly write.
Step 4. Fill in the remaining blanks
As soon as you finish writing all the words on the list into the puzzle, fill in the blanks with random letters. This will make it difficult for people working on it to find the words they are looking for.
Make sure that no new words are accidentally created from additional letters that you write down at random, especially if the words turn out to be in keeping with the theme you are using. This will leave people working on your puzzle very confused
Step 5. Make several copies
Do this if you plan to give the game to more than one person.
- Write all letters in capital letters, so that no clues are created in the puzzle.
- If you don't want to take the time to create your own handwritten word search or use a document on your computer, there are many sites where you can create your own word search online. Just type the keyword 'make your own word search game' into a search engine and you are guaranteed to find many sites that can help you create word search games.
- Make the letters easy to read.