How to Make Your Own Word Search Puzzles

By Ainsley Patterson

A word search puzzle is made up of a large grid of seemingly random letters. Within that grid of letters, however, are words that the player must find. Some players may like to time themselves to see how fast they can complete the puzzle, while other players may just enjoy completing their word searches at a more leisurely pace. You can create your own word search puzzles as part of the entertainment for a party or to give out to the students in a class.

Make a list of words you will include in your word search on a piece of printer paper. The words may all fit into a theme, such as dinosaurs or medical terms, or they may just be a collection of words. Vary the length of the words, with none of them being shorter than three letters.

Fill in a piece of graph paper with your words by writing one letter in each box on the paper. Write words going across, down and diagonally. You may even make some of the words going backwards for a more challenging puzzle. Write the words in all capital letters so as not to give away their location within the puzzle.

Fill in the rest of the graph paper with random letters, again with all capital letters.

Make an equal number of copies of the word list and the puzzle, one for each person who will be doing the word search. Staple one word list to each puzzle.

About the Author

Based in Ypsilanti, Mich., Ainsley Patterson has been a freelance writer since 2007. Her articles appear on various websites. She especially enjoys utilizing her more than 10 years of craft and sewing experience to write tutorials. Patterson is working on her bachelor's degree in liberal arts at the University of Michigan.