I think that word games can be a fun way to improve your vocabulary, or just give it a bit of refresh in both your native or second language.
As an example:
Mini M was having trouble with his spelling (and volume at the dinner table) a few months back, so in an effort to improve both, I decided to start a word game after dinner one night.
The game is quite simple and it required Mini M to think about the spelling of words and can be a great exercise in vocabulary for language learners.
I came up with the idea for this game spur of the moment, but I’m quite sure I’m not the first to think of it and other quite similar games exist, but here is how we played.
How to Play:
Someone begins with a word (any word) and the next player must choose a word that begins with the letter the previous player’s word ended with. They cannot repeat a word that has not already been used.
So, for example, the first word chosen is “inondation” the word for “flood” in French (Mini M only speaks French). The next person would have to choose a word that begins with the letter “n.” So they could pick “naïveté” and the following person would then need to choose a word that begins with “e.” And so on.
Players are eliminated when they cannot come up with a word for their letter. It can be played with or without a timer (you’re only given a certain amount of time to come up with a word or as much time as you need).
It was a fun game but when M and Mini M began choosing words that began with “u” constantly when I was next, it became a bit frustrating (there aren’t a whole lot of words in French that begin with “u” and after a few rounds, you’ve easily used them and their variants up).
Either way, it’s a great vocabulary exercise in general, but even better when it’s not your native tongue. It was also a fun way to engage with my family – even Mamie and Papi enjoyed playing.