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Wordle is a s-m-a-s-h in this class

Northview — The latest word game craze has hit Sarah Carpenter’s North Oakview Elementary classroom. 

Her third-graders have become savvy in Wordle, the straightforward, six attempts at a five-letter word tile challenge, where letters of their guesses are written inside squares. A square turns green if the letter matches the place in the final word, orange if the letter is in the word but in the wrong space, and black if the letter is not in the word at all.

The game played in Carpenter’s classroom mirrors that of the web-based game created mere months ago and now played by hundreds of thousands, but orange letters in her classroom appear yellow online.

Hanna Schoonmaker began one game by guessing the word “mixed,” which earned an orange E. 

Next, Ayden Osmolinski tried “tiles,” which earned no new letters in green or orange.

Then Colton Yost tried “equal,” and that got another orange E and an orange A.

Ben Parker looked around the room, locked eyes on a desktop of Valentine’s Day decorations, and guessed “heart” for the win.

Students are learning spelling and vocabulary, sure, but also that it’s important to raise a hand and wait to be called on before speaking, and to not blurt out a guess when it’s not your turn.

Carpenter began playing the game herself and thought it would be right up her students’ a-l-l-e-y. She’s since turned one of those (now ubiquitous) disinfecting wipe dispenser bottles into a suggestion container, where third-graders can submit words of their own.

Izzy Dominguez, who submitted p-o-w-e-r, said the game isn’t that hard, “only sometimes when you don’t know that many five-letter words or how to spell them.”

P-o-i-n-t t-a-k-e-n, Izzy.

From left, third-graders Hanna Schoonmaker, Colton Yost, Ayden Osmolinski and Bennett Parker solved this Wordle
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Morgan Jarema
Morgan Jarema
Morgan Jarema is a reporter and copy editor, covering Northview. She is a Grand Rapids native and a product of Grand Rapids Public Schools, including Brookside and West Leonard elementaries, City Middle/High School and Ottawa Hills. She found her tribe in journalism in 1997 and has never wanted to do anything but write. For 15 years she was a freelance journalist for The Grand Rapids Press, covering local schools and government, religion, business, home & garden and lifestyles. She and her husband, John, think even those without kiddos should be invested in their local schools and made to feel a part of them. Read Morgan's full bio


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