Inquiry Unlimited | ONGOING INDEX | The Playful Mind | Films by Continent | Films by Genre | Regional Songs Across America | Boston's Ellis Island

Brain Boosts

Original Puzzles for Leisure Fun

For background in learning style research, see the interactive activities pursued
at the Stanley Senior Center, Waltham, MA - Council on Aging, Waltham, MA sessions of "The Playful Mind"

Exercise your mind as you would exercise your body.

Core elements of a healthy brain lifestyle: nutrition, socialization, spirituality, physical activity, and mental stimulation.*

* Why not look into these books and resources:


Activity: Tangram
Benefits: Geometric thinking; Visualizing spatial relationships; Mental rotation skills; Eye Tracking

Activity: Word Boxes
Benefits: Eye scanning; Word recall; Vocabulary
Student-created Artifact Word Box

Activity: Alphabet Letter Code
Benefits: Codes; Problem Solving; Logic
Student-created Alphabet Letter Code

Activity: Letter Equations
Challenge: Pattern recognition; Categories; Logic
Letter Equations

Activity: Jigsaw Puzzle - Visual Thinking
Benefits: Hand-eye coordination; Fine motor skills and dexterity; Visual scanning; Visual problem solving; Focus and attention

Student-created jigsaw - Put Boston Back Together

Activity: Who Are We - Logic Puzzle
Benefits: Logic; Problem solving
Student-created Visual Logic
Who Owns What? - - A Standard Logic Puzzle

Activity: Add A Letter Ladder
Benefits: Word Reconstruction; Vocabulary
Student-created Ladder Puzzle

Activity: Missing Letters - reconstructing words
Benefits: Word flexibility; Word reconstruction; Information retrieval

Alphagram - Rabbit-Proof Fence
Alphagram and Word Search - The Horse Whisperer
Broadway Alphagram

Activity: How many squares?
Benefits: Whole and part visualization; Visual discrimination; Geometric Logic

Checkerboard Squares

Activity: Find the Cats near Faneuil Hall
Benefits: Visual perception; Eye scanning
Student-created Find the Missing Cats

Activity: Phrase Finder
Benefit: Word search; Word Reconstruction; Word Retrieval

Staying Sharp

Activity: Strategy Games
Benefits: Logic; Problem solving; Cognitive Complexity; Information Retrieval

Activity: Word Search Puzzles
Benefits:Information retrieval; Word recall; Focus and attention; Eye scanning

ORIGINAL SAMPLES of Word Searches based on novels:
Skipping Christmas by John Grisham
Snow Falling on Cedars by David Guterson
The Horse Whisperer

Activity: Crostic
Benefits: Word recall; Analytical connections; Information retrieval

Illustrated puzzle
- Boston - A Crostic Puzzle

Activity: Code Word Puzzle
Benefits:Information retrieval; Word recall; Logic; Eye scanning

ORIGINAL SAMPLES of Codeword Puzzles:
Codeword - Fall Theme Puzzle
Codeword Book to Film theme

Activity: Figure Logic Puzzle
Benefits: Number fact recall; Analytical connections; Logic

ORIGINAL SAMPLES of Figure Logic Puzzles:
Figure Logic 1 - Puzzle
Figure Logic 2 - Puzzle

Activity: Crossword Puzzles
Benefits:Information retrieval; Word recall; Focus and attention; Problem solving

ORIGINAL SAMPLES of Crossword Puzzles:
Old Boston
New England
North America
Broadway Musicals Crossword

Activity: Illustrated word puzzle
Benefits: Word recall; Analytical connections; Information retrieval

ORIGINAL SAMPLE of Illustrated Word Puzzles:
Illustrated puzzle - Boston Beckons

Matrix Logic Puzzle
Benefits: Analytical reasoning; Problem Solving; Observing patterns

ORIGINAL SAMPLES of Matrix Logic Puzzles:
Colonial Tradesmen | Colonial Chores | Apprentices | Patriot Births

Activity: Missing Objects
Benefits:Analyzing visual similarities; Problem solving; Eye focus

ORIGINAL SAMPLES of Missing Patterns:
Logic with pictures - Food

Activity: Sorting Money using Logic
Benefits:Logic; Mathematical Reasoning

ORIGINAL SAMPLES: Student-created - Money Sorting

Activity: Word Sudoku - Use letters: D I C S F O H M V

Benefits: Problem solving skills; Improve focus and attention to contiguous blocks

ORIGINAL SAMPLES of Word Sudoku Puzzles:
Colonial Boston Word Sudoku
Word Sudoku - based on Sudoku - Easy | Word Sudoku - based on Sudoku Medium

Activity: Reconstructing Words
Benefits: Logic; Reasoning

Four-Fit 1 (PDF)

Activity: Anagrams - Use letters: K A K I H = KHAKI

Benefits: Problem solving skills; Reconstructing words

ORIGINAL SAMPLE of Jumble Puzzles:
Jumble Variation About Australia

Activity: Reconstructing Words
Benefits: Logic; Reasoning

Fill-In Broadway (PDF)
5-Letter Fill-In Broadway Song Titles (PDF)

Activity: Syllables

Benefits: Reconstructing words based on meaning

ORIGINAL SAMPLE of Syllacrostic Puzzles:
Syllacrostic Broadway (PDF)

The Playful Mind is a work in progress originating from Inquiry Unlimited. Material was organized for discussion at the Council of Aging, Waltham, MA in the Stanley Senior Center.
Copyright © 2014 Marjorie Duby All Rights Reserved.
Last modified: February 11, 2017

NOTE: The contents of this website are for the use of educational purposes. Book sources have been footnoted. Graphics and images are available online by searching.
It is in no way the intent of the author to violate copyright laws.
DISCLAIMER: Inquiry Unlimited attempts to provide appropriate, informative educational links. We check and update links frequently. We cannot be responsible for the content, use of, or quality of materials on any website other than our own.
To the best of our knowledge, graphics on this site are public domain. If you find otherwise, please notify us and we will remove them immediately.