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Why no writing?

No pencil or pen needed for stiXzzle puzzles.

Why no writing?

A limited vocabulary impedes reading. It’s tough to enjoy reading when it is a word by word struggle. Yet, the paradox is that reading helps to increase vocabulary.

Vocabulary learning depends on the number of meetings with each word and the quality of attention at each meeting (Nation 2015). Many of these meetings occur in a classroom, but deliberately teaching vocabulary is actually one of the least efficient ways to develop vocabulary (Nation 2005).

So what is one to do?

Well, one can add stiXzzle to the meeting mix. Fun is a good way to bring about repeated plays with undivided attention.

Since writing may be a grind whereas stickers are a delight, answers are not written but stickers are pasted in a stiXzzle puzzle. It’s not that writing is unimportant, but word recognition has a higher priority over the ability to reproduce a character stroke by stroke where reading vocabulary is concerned. So, we max the fun factor and leave the习字to some other time.

Do I hear protests? What? Miss the chance to do习字?

stiXzzle is a game!

Repeat after me: stiXzzle is not a worksheet.

Repeat after me: stiXzzle is not a worksheet.

Repeat after me: stiXzzle is not a worksheet.

It’s fun time. It’s sticker time. It’s puzzle time. It just happens that one is having fun while playing with Chinese words. And learning them.


Nation, Paul. (2005). Teaching Vocabulary. The Asian EFL Journal, 7(3) pp. 1.

Nation, Paul. (2015). Principles guiding vocabulary learning through extensive reading. Reading in a Foreign Language, 27(1) pp. 1.


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