Tiny words are huge gift to Scrabble players Foreign language versions of Scrabble assign different point values to letters than U.S. version (AP photos)
Tiny words are huge gift to Scrabble players
Lexile

To Scrabble fanatics, big gifts sometimes come in small packages.

The word "te" as a variant of "ti," is the seventh tone on the musical scale. It is a little gem among 5,000 words to be added to "The Official Scrabble Players Dictionary" next week.

The dictionary's last freshening up was a decade ago. New entries include texter, vlog, bromance, hashtag, dubstep and selfie.

But it's the addition of te and three other two-letter words da, gi and po that has Robin Pollock Daniel excited. Daniel is a champion of the North American Scrabble Players Association. It has a committee that helps Merriam-Webster track down new, playable words of two to eight letters.

"Being able to hook an 'e' underneath 't' means that I can play far more words," explained Daniel, who practices Scrabble two to four hours a day. The more two-letter words we have, the more possibilities a word will fit."

The new words add about 40 pages to the Scrabble-sanctioned dictionary, which lists more than 100,000 playable words.

To be included in the 36-year-old book, a word must be found in a standard dictionary. It can't require capitalization, can't have hyphens or apostrophes and can't be an abbreviation. Of course, they must be two to eight letters.

Merriam-Webster didn't identify all 5,000 new words but released a list of about 30 that include:

Beatbox, buzzkill, chillax, coqui, frenemy, funplex, jockdom, joypad, mixtape, mojito, ponzu, qigong, schmutz, sudoku and yuzu. Geocache was also added, voted into the dictionary by the public during a Facebook contest in May.

Critical thinking challenge: Why do foreign language versions of Scrabble assign different point values to letters than the U.S. version?

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COMMENTS (3)
  • sydney_sv6
    11/18/2014 - 08:22 p.m.

    In this article it talks about how the people who make the scrabble game assign different point values because each language has different words and some languages have words that barely use some letters in in their language.But in North America we use a variety of each letter and some letters don't appear as often as other letters in our language. In each country there are variety of words in each language and some letters are used less than others but each letter plays an important part in our language.

  • Eugene0808-YYCA
    12/11/2014 - 12:12 a.m.

    I think this would make the game more fun because with the new words, people can have more opportunities to earn points from the words. Also, it depends on which version you are playing. The points are different in every version of Scrabble. Also, I think it would be very confusing because there are a lot more words to spell than before. It would be even more competitive than in the past because there would be more words and people would try to be the first person to spell the word.
    Critical thinking challenge: Why do foreign language versions of Scrabble assign different point values to letters than the U.S. version?
    Answer: Foreign language versions of Scrabble assign different point values to letters than the U.S. version because different languages can vary within different countries so the points have to be different.

  • Kyeesham829
    3/27/2015 - 02:10 p.m.

    Tiny words are a big help when you are in the middle of a word game because surprisingly they score a lot of points especially at the end of a game.

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