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lackluster - Absence of brightness; dullness

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About the SYZYGY Board Game

In this word game, each player makes his or her own crossword puzzle drawing from the 304 letter tiles. The game is very interactive. Play goes very quickly. The best part is that everyone, regardless of age, can play together. Each player draws 9 letter tiles from a pool of 304 letter tiles. Someone says "Go" and everyone turns their tiles right side up and begins to construct a crossword puzzle. All words must connect just like a crossword puzzle.

The first person to use all 9 tiles says "DRAW" and everyone must draw a new tile from the pool and proceed to add the new tile to their puzzle which may mean rearranging the tiles already placed. Words evolve, the puzzle evolves and when all the tiles are used up, the first person to use their last tile yells "DONE". Everyone must stop.

Each player now reads their words so that everyone can see that their puzzle is legitimately constructed. This gives the opportunity for players to learn vocabulary words from each other. This is especially useful when younger children are playing with adults. When the children say their words that they are so very proud of, parents, teachers etc. can monitor the children's reading and spelling abilities. When the children are corrected they do not feel threatened, as it's a game! But their vocabulary retention is wonderful.

SYZYGY is an excellent educational tool in ESL classes, too. Its fast play and emphasis on spelling and vocabulary can help students learn English in a fun and friendly environment. Instructors can use the game to highlight anagrams and how letters in one word can be rearranged to form other words. There are countless uses for that weird name word game: SYZYGY!

Syzygy is quick to set up so you can take it on trips or keep it handy for a spur-of-the-moment game.

SYZYGY creator, Lorraine Spiering

About the Author

Lorraine Spiering, a professional seamstress with her own alteration store, is the type of person who loves playing word games and thumbing through the dictionary. SYZYGY got its start when she sat down with a game with Darlene Hunker. Darlene dumped a pile of Scrabble® tiles on the table and said "Let's play!" The game was creating crossword puzzles faster than the other players. Lorraine was hooked! Darlene told her she had learned the game from some women she met at a retreat. The women were bored and started pushing Scrabble® tiles around, making their own crossword puzzles. Lorraine went on to develop the rules, and the end result is the game of SYZYGY which was released in February, 1997 with a 20,000 unit production run.

The word Syzygy (siz-uh-jee) is an astrological term for an alignment of celestial bodies. Lorraine's favorite alignment is of the Sun, Earth and Moon. "A full Eclipse is an absolute miracle."