Friday, January 4, 2008

Free Rice


One of the great things about blogging is the unexpected places it takes you. I was checking blogs yesterday, and on stefanie’s site she mentioned bloglily’s site.  While exploring bloglily's excellent blog, which was new to me, I saw that she had been enriching her vocabulary on free rice.

It’s a little game where you test your vocabulary, and for every correct answer, this organization donates 20 grains of rice through the United Nations to end world hunger.

How great to waste a little time on the net improving my vocabulary and feeding the hungry at the same time. I was immediately hooked.

There are 50 levels, but apparently it’s rare to get above 48. I got really cocky when I ran across a bunch of words I learned from reading Jane Austen, and got up to level 47, but then I fell lower and now hover around 45, because I’m sorry, there are some crazy words on this quiz. For example, I’ve never before run across the word “sutler”, and had no idea that it means “provisioner”. But the strange and interesting thing about this game is that you sometimes know what a word means without exactly knowing why—probably because you know the Latin root or carry the word around in the recesses of your brain from some long-ago reading experience--but it’s rather magical when it happens.

So enjoy saving the world, one word at a time!

Update--on stefanie's site today, she has a good review of a book I want to read, The Uncommon Reader: A Novella, by Alan Bennett--check it out.

12 comments:

Stefanie said...

Isn't the free rice site cool? I hover in the low to mid 40s. Thanks for the mention!

Gentle Reader said...

stefanie--you're welcome, and I love the free rice site. Except it's a bit addictive...

John Mutford said...

I've been on that site a lot lately too. Fun stuff. Riceriffic.

Jen said...

jeesh. i just spent an hour on this. i can't get past 46. so aggravating! but at least i'm helping someone...

happy new year! xo

jenclair said...

I did this a while back (I'm not sure where I saw it - maybe Mouse Medicine)and thoroughly enjoyed it, but had forgotten about it. Thanks for the reminder!

Gentle Reader said...

john--like i said to stefanie--addictive!

jen--sad to say, i've spent more than an hour. happy new year!

jenclair--you're welcome, and happy new year!

jen said...

47...and a few more hours gone...

Gentle Reader said...

jen--lol!

Tara said...

This is a cool site - though my score is lower than yours! I know what you mean about knowing what a word means but not knowing why or how you do...it's an interesting phenomenon.

BiblioAddict said...

I'm a FreeRice fan too! I spent so much time on FreeRice when I first found out about it that I had to ban myself from playing it while I was at work. Otherwise, I wouldn't get anything done. It is very, very addictive. But at least that's one thing that I'm addicted to that actually helps someone else. That's the kind of addiction I can live with. :)

Gentle Reader said...

tara--isn't it a weird feeling, knowing a word without knowing why? And watch out, free rice is addictive!

j.s.--Very, very addictive! But yes, at least it's helping people out :)

lisamm said...

That's a time sucker!! Fun, though, and for a good cause.