Youth Scrabble

  • Are you 17 years old or younger?
  • Are you keen to become a great Scrabble player?
  • Does your school want to start or improve a Scrabble club?
  • If so you have come to the right place.
  • Here you will find all you need to know and if you don’t please contact

Suanne Ong and Alistair Richards at the World Youth Championships 2009

Interview with Suanne Ong


An Overview

Young people the world over are rediscovering the game of Scrabble. Many are playing it online at places such as the Internet Scrabble Club and on FaceBook. In some countries there have also been many players joining clubs and playing in tournaments. South Africa has been a bit behind in this regard and we hope to change that. We would like to establish more school Scrabble Clubs, get more young players entering tournaments and into the ratings system , and ultimately send a team of at least three players to the World Youth Scrabble Championships.

World Youth Scrabble Championships

These were held in Manila, Phillipines on Dec 2010. ScrabbleSA had no representatives at the 2009 competition but sent  Joe Leqoalane and Tsholofelo Modise from Heilbron and Faraad Moyse from Holy Family Convent.

Schools Scrabble

Scrabble is suitable for both Primary (from grade 4) and High Schools.

We can offer help to schools that would like to start or improve a Scrabble Club. Someone will come to the school and do two introductory workshops  (or two advanced workshops if a club is established already). This person will also be available by email and phone to give support and advice. We will also give you software for word checking, game analysis, word learning, score sheets, etc. All of this is at no cost to the school. We can also source Scrabble sets.

A schools tournament was held on Sunday 1 August 2010 at King David School, Linksfield, Johannesburg. 32 players from General Smuts (Vereeniging) RedHill, Holy Family, Bryandale Primary and Wits University took part. Joint winners were Funeka Sibande (Wits University) and Sam van Vliet (Bryandale Primary).

Scrabble Camp

From 23 to 25 July  2010 Garth van Vliet organised and held the Youth Scrabble Camp from in Heidelberg. Said Garth:

“We used a fantastic venue – the Klipkraal guest farm where we stayed in an old
house and had a separate function room for classes. This would actually be a
great venue for a weekend tournament as they are busy building a bigger function
hall in an old barn.

8 youngsters attended ranging in age from 11 – 18. All were reasonable players
already but learned a heck of a lot in two days of intensive workshops. Their
mental stamina was amazing to see as they started early in the morning and were
still playing late into the night. On the Sunday we played a seven game round
robin tournament under normal tournament conditions. Some great Scrabble was
played and a very smooth tournament was held.

The kids were all amazing – intelligent, motivated helpful etc. They helped with
cleaning up cooking etc and were all just great company. They also made great
new friends which will hopefully grow the youth Scrabble community.

I would like to thank Rosemary Tod who drove three kids down and helped with
catering and logistics while there. I think Rosemary gained nearly as much as
the kids from the workshops and we should be seeing a big ratings jump from her
soon 😉

Also big thanks to Karen and Paul Richards for driving all the way from
eMalahleni and for running such superb workshops. SA is now on the way to
catching the rest of the world as far as quality of youth players is concerned.
There is still much to be done though.”