SCRABBLE Become a Family Champ & Beyond!
COURSE DESCRIPTION • Play better, maybe become family champ! • Learn which tiles to play, which to hold • See scoring “Hot Spots” on the board • Find “bingos” using all 7 tiles- 50 extra pts • Learn strategy- offense & defense • Chances to playopen instructional games • If interested, play competitively 1 on 1 • Learn about Asheville Scrabble Club • Local, regional, national tournament info
INSTRUCTOR JACOB COHEN • Retired teacher and principal • Co-Director of the Asheville Scrabble Club • Playing competitively since 2009 • Webmeister & statistician of club’s website www.ashevillescrabble.com
RECOMMENDED BOOKS Everything Scrabble, 3rd edition by Joe Edley and John D. Williams Jr. ISBN: 978-1-4165-6175-0 $16.99 (this course is adapted from this excellent reference) Official Scrabble Players Dictionary, 4th edition, Merriam-Webster ISBN: 978-0877799290 $7.50 Optional: Word Freak: Heartbreak, Triumph, Genius, and Obsession in the World of Competitive Scrabble Players ISBN: 0-14-200226-7 $16.99
Week 1 Course Overview Glossary Week 2 Official Scrabble Players Dictionary, 4th ed. (OSPD4) Define what you mean by a “definition” Q without U words; short Q words Words with no vwls Board orientation and notation Week 3 Finding and using “Hot Spots”on the board COURSE PLAN
Week 4 Demo Game: Mark Schmidt, Brett Haughney, expert players, Asheville Scrabble Club Week 5 Cheat Sheet Scrabble Guy Teaches the 2s in 5 Minutes! Move Tiles on Your Rack- useful letter combos Tile Order of Usefulness Rack Management Course Plan
Week 6 Bingos Strategy- Offense and Defense Phoneys- if & when to play them Week 7 After you are the family champ… Club and Tournament Play Asheville Scrabble Club website Week 8 Demo Game: Mark & Brett have a rematch Course Plan
EACH WEEK WE WILL HAVE ScrabbleBabble (Scrabble topics for the day) ~40”babbleverb- divulge “secrets” ScrabbleDabble(word play- build Scrabble skills) ~15” dabbleverb-work with in a non-serious manner ScrabbleBabel(break time- no Scrabble!) ~10” babelnoun- confusion of voices and other sounds ScrabbleScrabble(play Scrabble w/each other) ~55” scrabbleverb- to grope about frantically (looking for words) and, at the same time, some of you may choose to: ScrabbleRabble(play an open instructional game) ~55” rabblenoun- disorderly crowd of people (arguing about strategy!)
QUESTIONS • Why did you choose this class? • Want to increase your scoring average? • Want to learn which are the best tiles to hold onto? • Want to find the best scoring spots on the board? • Want to learn offensive and defensive strategy? • Want to be your family champ? • Want to find out about club and tournament play?
GLOSSARY Alphagram- alphabetic arrangement of letters; Ex: AIJNORT is alphagram for JANITOR Anagram- word spelled with exact same letters as another word. Ex: KITCHEN, THICKEN Bingo- use all 7 letters on rack; score 50 extra points Bingo-friendly tiles- ERS?, AL?, AERST, CANISTER Blank- indicated as ?, most valuable tile-versatile Block- play word to stop opponent’s possible big score “Challenge!”- announce to check if word is acceptable Closed Board- few or no places to play bingos/hi scores Dump- low-scoring play; gets rid of poor letter combo Endgame- strategic play when fewer than 8 tiles in bag Exchange- use turn to trade in 1-7 tiles; need 7 in bag
GLOSSARY Extension- add 2+ letters to a word on board; (often to TWS); Ex: CON-QUEST, QUEST-ION Fishing- playing off or trading 1-2 tiles looking for bingo “Hold!”- announced when considering a challenge Hook- add letter to front/back of word to make new one; Ex: HARD + Y = HARDY; C + HARD = CHARD Hot Spots- TLS-TLS, DLS-DWS, TLS-DWS, TWS-DLS, DWS-DWS, TWS-TWS; all places for high scores Leave- group of tiles left on rack after play, before draw Open Board- many places to play bingos/hi score plays OSPD- Official Scrabble Players Dictionary, 4th ed. Parallel Play- Ex: M A R L A T E (LATE, MA, AT, & RE all score)
GLOSSARY Phoney- unacceptable word (not found in OSPD); may stay on board if unchallenged; some played deliberately (like bluffing in poker) Power Tiles- ten most valuable- 2 ?s, 4 Ss, J, Q, X, Z Rack Balancing- leaving letters on rack that will help score well on next turn; good ratio of cons/vowels Stems- 6 & 7-letter bingo-friendly combos to add 1 letter Ex: SATIRE (add 1 letter to make 70 words); NASTIER (add 1 letter to make 69 words) TWL- Tournament and Club Word List- list of acceptable words (all OSPD, plus about 200 offensive words); not used in schools or by most living room players; no definitions provided
SCRABBLE DABBLE _ HONG _ AGON _ IMID _ ANTA _ VIES _ BACK _ VARY _ FOUL _ PRIG _ EGER _ PERM _ HIDE _ PALS _ AGMA _ HOST _ AGUE _ IWIS _ KING _ PLAT _ LAKY _ NOME _ OMIT _ HILI _ HEIR _ PICE _ LAID _ DEAL _ RIAL _ RIMY _ ROOD HOOK WORDS- Each of these 4-letter words is found in the OSPD4. Add a letter in front of each one to make a common 5-letter word.
SCRABBLE DABBLE _ EYED _ FIRE _ FOOT _ CONS _ GAPE _ LOBE _ GREE _ MAGE _ HEAP _ HEFT _ LEFT _ LIEN _ GLOW _ LOFT _ LORY _ LUNT _ HANT _ MELL _ RUTH _ NAVE _ RUSK _ MIRK _ TROP _ VAIL _ BONY _ VERY _ APSE _ VOWS _ WEAK _ WELT HOOK WORDS- Each of these 4-letter words is found in the OSPD4. Add a letter in front of each one to make a common 5-letter word.
OSPDOFFICIAL SCRABBLE PLAYERS DICTIONARY • Disagreements about which words were “good” • 1975 OSPD, 1st edition published • Words had to be found in 2 of 5 popular dictionaries • 2-8 letters and their longer inflections; Ex: UNLIKELIEST • 100,000+ words; no pronunciations; short definitions • 2nd ed 1991; 3rd ed 1995; 4th ed 2005 (currently used) • Dictionary committee considers additions/deletions
DEFINITIONS • Where do you draw the line on completeness? • OSPD4 has only minimal definitions; Ex: a mineral • Tournament & Club Word List (TWL)- no definitions • Some people learn definitions to remember the words • Others care only that a word is acceptable • People play even though they don’t speak English!
OSPDOFFICIAL SCRABBLE PLAYERS DICTIONARY • Only 1 definition provided; often an uncommon usage • Ex: IMP- v. to graft feathers onto a bird’s wing • RE and UN sections; 100s of undefined words • Unless an –ING word listed as noun, then no plural • Ex: PLAY v. –S, -ED, -ING; • FLYING n., FLYINGS • Word or inflection in boldface, then it is acceptable • FOCUS, FOCUSING, FOCUSES, FOCUSSED, • FOCUSSING, FOCUSSES
OSPDOFFICIAL SCRABBLE PLAYERS DICTIONARY • Not all verbs can add ER to make a noun; • Ex: PLAY / PLAYER, BAKE / BAKER; • PART / but no PARTER * • * means a phoney (non-acceptable word) • Foreign words generally not acceptable, yet, some • seem foreign; acceptable if no English equivalent • Ex: currency, titles, etc. PESETA, XU, SAHIB, QAID • Some words boldfaced more than once; adj. & verb • Ex: adj. BRITTLE, BRITTLER, BRITTLEST • v. BRITTLES, BRITTLING, BRITTLES
Q WITHOUT U WORDS • Strange?, Yes!; Good?, Absolutely! & very useful! MBAQANGAn pl –S a South African dance music QABALAn pl-Scabala (an occult or secret doctrine) QABALAHn pl –S same as QABALA QADIn pl –S a Muslim judge QAIDn pl –S variation of CAID, a Muslim leader QANATn pl –S a system of underground tunnels and wells in the Middle East QATn pl –S variation of KAT, an evergreen shrub QIn pl –S the vital force that in Chinese thought is inherent in all things
QINDARn pl –DARS or –DARKAvariation of QINTAR, a monetary unit in Albania QINTARn pl –S see above SHEQELn pl SHEQALIM, SHEQELS, an ancient unit of weight TRANQn pl –S variation of TRANK(i.e. tranquilizer) QOPHn pl–Svariation of KOPH, a letter of the Hebrew alphabet QWERTYn pl –S a standard keyboard FAQIRn pl –S variation of FAKIR, a Hindu ascetic Also of note: BUQSHA, BUQSHAS, BURQA, BURQAS, QIVIUT. QIVIUTS, SUQ, SUQS, UMIAQ, UMIAQS
SHORT Q WORDS QATSUQSQUAIS QUERY QUOIN QISAQUAE QUAKE QUEST QUOIT QUA AQUAS QUAKY QUEUE QUOLL SUQBURQAQUALEQUEYS QUOTA AQUA EQUAL QUALM QUICK QUOTE QADI EQUID QUANT QUIDS QUOTH QAID EQUIP QUARE QUIET QURSH
SHORT Q WORDS QATS FAQIR QUARK QUIFF ROQUE QOPH FIQUE QUART QUILL SQUAB QUAD MAQUI QUASH QUILT SQUAD QUAG PIQUE QUASI QUINS SQUAT QUAI QADIS QUASS QUINT SQUAW QUAY QAIDS QUATE QUIPS SQUEG QUEY QANAT QUAYS QUIPU SQUIB
SHORT Q Words QUID QOPHS QUBIT QUIRE SQUID QUIN QUACK QUEAN QUIRK TOQUE QUIP QUADS QUEEN QUIRT TRANQ QUIT QUAFF QUEER QUITE TUQUE QUIZ QUAGS QUELL QUITS UMIAQ QUOD QUAIL QUERN QUODS USQUE
WORDS WITH NO VWLS BRR interj used to indicate that one feels cold BRRRinterj see BRR CRWTHn pl –San ancient stringed musical instrument CWM n pl –S a deep steep-walled basin HM interj used to express thoughtful consideration HMM interj see HM MM interj used to express assent or satisfaction NTH adv pertaining to an indefinitely large ordinal number PFFT interj used to express a sudden ending PHPHT interjsee PHT PHT interj used as an expression of mild anger or annoyance
WORDS WITH NO VWLS PSST interj used to attract someone’s attention PST interjsee PSST SH interj used to urge silence SHH interjsee SH TSK v -ED, -ING, -S to utter an expression of annoyance TSKTSK v -ED, -ING, -S to tsk
Board Notation Center square 8H or H8 If word is horizontal, list number first If word is vertical, list letter first
Notation Examples WATCH, 8D HALTER, E7 Give position from first letter of word
SCRABBLE DABBLE _ ACTOR _ ADIOS _ AGLET _ AIVER _ ALARY _ ALDER _ ALIGN _ ALOES _ AMBIT _ AMENT _ ANTIS _ APTLY _ ARBOR _ ARGLE _ ARGON _ ARSON _ ASCOT _ ATMAN _ AWFUL _ BATED _ BLEST _ BORTS _ CRAWL _ CURVY _ DRIFT _ EAGER _ EAGLE _ EBBED _ EDUCT _ EGRET HOOK WORDS- Each of these 5-letter words is found in the OSPD4. Add a letter in front of each one to make a common 6-letter word.
SCRABBLE DABBLE _ ELECT _ EMBER _ ENURE _ ERROR _ EVERT _ EXIST _ GREED _ HADED _ HOOEY _ HORAL _ HOSEN _ HUBBY _ HYING _ INDOW _ IRADE _ KETCH _ LAPSE _ LINGY _ LIVES _ LOGAN _ LORAL _ OSMIC _ OVINE _ QUATE _ RALLY _ RAYON _ RIFLE _ RIGID _ SABLE _ UNSET HOOK WORDS- Each of these 5-letter words is found in the OSPD4. Add a letter in front of each one to make a common 6-letter word.
Finding “Hot Spots” on the Board As a novice tournament player, I once asked an expert, “What’s the difference between a novice and an expert? “The novicefindswords on hisrack to play on the board”. “The expertfinds thebest spots on the board, and, then, finds the words on her rack to fit.” “Hot Spots” are what experts find and play.
Premium Squares 61/225 squares DLS light blue TLS dark blue DWS light red TWS dark red design symmetry by architect/creator, Alfred Butts
Premium Squares “Hot Spots” Parallel Play TLS-TLS DLS-DWS TLS-DWS DLS-TWS DWS-DWS TWS-TWS
Parallel Play Look at 8L Your rack includes DEFN
Parallel Play play FEND at 8L to score 72 points
TLS-TLS dark blue-dark blue columns B, F, J, N rows 2, 6, 10, 14 “Hot Spots” play high point tiles F, H, J, K, Q, V, W ,X, Y, Z also B, C, M, P
TLS-TLS dark blue-dark blue BEBOP 23 pts HONED 21 pts WELCH 29 pts PRETZEL 44 pts
DLS-DWS light blue-light red columns C, D, L, M rows 3, 4, 12, 13 2 DLS-DWS possible on same columns and rows
DLS-DWS light blue-light red YOWIE 46 pts GRAPH 30 pts EXCITE 51pts
2 DLS-DWS light blue-light red NOURISH 30 pts FREEDOM 36 pts JOURNAL 46 pts
TLS-DWS dark blue-light red columns B, N rows 2, 14 30+ points with F, H, V, W, Y 70+ points with with Q, Z
TLS-DWS dark blue-light red BEADY 38 pts PORCH 40 pts KLUTZ 56 pts
DLS-TWS light blue-dark red columns A, O rows 1, 15 from TWS at H1, 8A, and to TWS at H15, 8O
DLS-TWS light blue-dark red MARKS 42 pts BUSHEL 45 pts HALF / AH 51 pts QUERY 81 pts
DWS-DWS light red-light red Horizontally 5E to 5K 11E to 11K Vertically E5 to K5 E11 to K11 4 x value of tiles!
DWS-DWS light red-light red Can occur as early as 2nd play of game Be careful how you place your first word, even if it’s a bingo