FAQ

Here are some frequently asked questions about Word Mania USA,
the most fun online literacy competition for schools in the USA!

The competition

What are the competition dates?

Word Mania USA is available for practice from January 14, 2019 to March 1, 2019. There is one round of competition for schools starting on March 4, 2019 and a Final Round starting on March 13, 2019 for the top performing schools.

Practise Round - January 14, 2019 to March 1, 2019
Competition Round - March 4, 2019 to March 8, 2019
Final Round - March 13, 2019 to March 15, 2019

How do schools participate?

The competition is free and to participate schools must be formally registered under the relevant legislation of their country, and have students in or between Grades 1 to 9 (English National Curriculum or local equivalent).

If your school has a LiteracyPlanet account you have automatic access to Word Mania, and teachers can contact LiteracyPlanet on wmusa@literacyplanet.com to arrange competition logins for additional students who don’t use the program.  

If your school does not already use LiteracyPlanet teachers can register the school for Word Mania USA at www.wordmania.com/us/register.

How do students play?
  • Click ‘Start’ on the Word Mania game and there is a three-second countdown before a board of 15 randomly generated letters is revealed and the three-minute countdown starts.
  • Drag letters into the word dock, and arrange or rearrange them to create words.
  • Click ‘Mark’ to score each word.
  • Drag letters out of the dock to remove them, or press ‘Clear’ to start again.
  • At the end of each three-minute game players receive a game score and number of valid words built.
What can schools win?

The Word Mania competition is by year level for Grades 1 to 9 (English National Curriculum or local equivalent). The more year levels that are participating the more chances your school has to win. There are lots of rewards to be won:

  • Certificates for schools at the top of their regional participation leaderboards at the end of each competition round.
  • Certificates for schools at the top of their regional skill leaderboards at the end of each competition round.
  • Certificates and an invitation to the final round for the top 50 schools for each year level at the end of the competition rounds.
  • Redeemable credits for LiteracyPlanet subscriptions and trophies for schools that place first, second and third for each year level after the final round.
How are scores determined?

To compete in a year level a school must have at least five students from that year level competing. Schools can see their ranking on regional and international leaderboards. Regional leaderboards for participation and skill are accessible from the teacher and student dashboards. An international leaderboard for skill is on the Word Mania website.

A school's participation score is the average number of games played per student in that year level. A school's skill score is the sum of the top 50 game scores achieved by a minimum of five students in that year level, with no more than 10 scores achieved by one student. 

How do the rounds of Word Mania work?

At the end of the Practice Round, schools are awarded certificates for coming First, Second or Third in their Year Group and Region for Participation.

At the end of the Competition Round, schools are awarded certificates for coming First, Second or Third in their Year Group and Region for Skill - and they also qualify for the Word Mania Finals.

At the end of the Final Round, schools that come First, Second and Third for their Year Group over all are determined as Word Mania Winners.

Technical help

General browser requirements

To successfully interact with our website, your browser must meet the following requirements:

  • The browser must be configured to accept cookies
  • The browser must be configured to execute JavaScript
  • The browser must have Adobe Flash 22 or higher installed and enabled. You can check whether you have Flash installed by clicking here.
  • You may experience difficulty accessing our online services if you have disabled cookies, JavaScript or Flash.
Specific browser requirements

To deliver a high level of customer support, LiteracyPlanet relies on statistical data obtained from visitors to our website, rather than generic industry data. We regularly review this data to determine which browsers to support.

We validate and fully support our customers' use of the following browser/platform combinations:

  • Chrome (56 or higher) for Windows (7 or better), and OS X Yosemite (version 10.10 or better).
  • Internet Explorer (11 and higher) for Windows (7 or better).
  • Firefox (45 or higher) for Windows (7 or better), and OS X Yosemite (version 10.10 or better).
  • Safari (9.1 or higher) for OS X Yosemite (version 10.10 or better).
  • We invest time and resources to ensure that our websites and Applications are consistent across each supported browser/platform combination.
I have a browser issue I can’t seem to fix…

If you are experiencing a problem using one of the browser/platform combinations we support, please contact our technical support group for assistance by emailing wmusa@literacyplanet.com.

If you are experiencing a problem on an unsupported browser/platform combination, the issue might be resolved by using one of the supported browsers mentioned above.

How do I update Flash?

Users on all supported platforms can manually check whether their installed Flash Player is the latest and most secure version. To check which version of Flash Player you are running, go to the Flash Player home page. This page runs a version test that reports your currently installed version of Flash Player and lists the latest available version for the platform.

Can I use Word Mania on my mobile devices?

The Word Mania App is supported on the following devices:

  • iPhone (SE/6 or higher), iPad (3 or higher), iPad Mini (2 or higher) with iOS 9.1 or higher.
  • Android 4.4 or above with a screen of 720p or higher.
How do I keep my account secure?

LiteracyPlanet is a safe website for children.

We recommend that children keep their username and password in a secure place and do not share it with anyone besides their parent and teacher.

We advise against publishing usernames on the Internet and if playing on a shared computer, tablet or phone, to remember to properly log out when finished.

Teachers

How do I know which region my school is in?

Teachers and students can see which region their school is in from their dashboard.

How do I see my school’s ranking?

You can find your school's ranking on regional and international leaderboards. Regional leaderboards for participation and skill are accessible from the teacher dashboard. The leaderboards for skill will appear on the Word Mania website once the competition has started.

Are smaller schools at a disadvantage?

No. Every school that has at least five students from the same year level playing Word Mania USA has a chance to win! Skill scores are based on the sum of the highest 50 game scores from at least five students from the same year level in a school.

Are there other resources for teachers?

Yes! We have a great free Word Mania 2018 Starter Kit for teachers including:

  • Word Mania tips & tricks
  • Word building games for the classroom
  • Take home letter for parents
  • Reward certificate
  • Creative activities: writing task, colouring-in poster template, short video.
  • Hours worth of literacy activity sheets.

Download the Starter Kit from www.wordmania.com/us/resources/.

The competition

How does Word Mania improve my child’s literacy?

Word building is a fun challenge that involves many different literacy skills:

  • Phonemes
  • Morphemes including affixes and plurals
  • Spelling
  • Word recognition
  • Vocabulary
  • Word knowledge
  • Word Mania tests and improves these skills, with the added challenge of speed!
Can my child play at home?

Yes, if your child has a LiteracyPlanet school login, they can use this to play Word Mania on any desktop or device at home.

Can my child use a LiteracyPlanet home account?

This is a school competition. Your child can play the Word Mania game on a LiteracyPlanet home account but to participate in the competition and play for their school they will need a LiteracyPlanet school login.

How can I get my child’s friends involved?

Tell friends and classmates about the free Word Mania USA competition and they can ask their teachers to organise logins for them to play. If you and your friends all have personal logins for Word Mania USA you can be 'Word Buddies' and compete against each other!

Download the app: