Strategy 1: Shift your perspective
Reshuffling an anagram into a recognizable pattern or shape makes it easier for the eye to look at the same scrambled letters in entirely new ways.
The key is breaking up the anagram and continuously rearranging the letters so the mind is able to notice possible patterns.
One way to get a new perspective of the anagram is by drawing circles around groups of letters. Even better, you can group pairs of letters together in common pairings and identifiable combinations.
For example, let’s say you have the letters A, I, and R. Once you isolate -AIR, you may notice that it can be attached to a ton of consonants to make words like STAIR, HAIR, and CHAIR.
You can also group any “rare” letter combinations like QU.
The goal here is isolating smaller pairs and groups of letters so that you have fewer letters to unscramble in the end.
Strategy 2: Alphabetize
You could also alphabetize the scrambled letters to get a better understanding of the kinds of letters you have to work.
Alphabetizing letters creates a jumbled, yet ordered list that can help 1) visualize the letters in the anagram and 2) notice any rare letters or duplicates.
Strategy 3: Separate vowels and consonants
Break up vowels and consonants in the word scramble by putting them in separate columns or groups of some sort. Order the consonants in different ways then insert the vowels as you go to see how many words you can create.If the anagram has a lot of vowels, a good strategy is to find any likely consonant pairs and patterns. Doing so will make it easier to unscramble letters to form words since there are less consonant variations than vowel combinations.
You’ll also want to consider eliminating unlikely consonants clusters such as TN, PN, TP, and NP. While these consonant pairs are occasionally seen in longer, borrowed words like pneumonia, they are pretty rare.
Now if you have mainly consonants, go ahead and pair any vowels that are often grouped together. Then see if you can tie single vowels and any vowel combinations in between likely consonant pairs such as -NG, ST-, -TH, -ST, -LTH.
Vowel combinations are a cornerstone of the English language. A vowel combination is a combination of two vowels, three vowels, or of a vowel and at least one consonant that creates one or more perceptually distinct units of sound.
In the English language, vowel combinations come in one of three forms:
- In clusters within a single syllable.
- In combination with a consonant(s).
- Before GH, which is typically silent (e.g. eight).
Common Double Vowel Combos
|EE (bee, knee, feet)||AI (rain, train, snail)|
|EA (eat, sea, read)||OA (boat, goat, soap)|
|OW (cow, town, clown)||OU (cloud, house, mouse)|
|EW (newt, screw, jewel)||OI (coin, oil, point)|
|AR (car, farm, barn)||OR (fort, stork, horse)|
There are also triple vowel combinations. But words with three consecutive vowels like ACQUAINTANCE and BEAUTIFUL are not as common as double vowel combinations.
Strategy 4: Separate prefixes and suffixes
Tons of words in the English language have prefixes and/or suffixes added to the beginning and end of the root (or stem) word.
Identifying such affixes makes it easier to visualize the remaining set(s) of characters and ultimately unscramble letters to create words.
For example, consider the anagram GIANUSM. There are 5040 ways to unscramble 7 letter words. But if you recognize the suffix –ING, then you are left with just AUSM.
Unscrambling 4 letters to words is much more manageable as you only have 4 x 3 x 2 x 1= 24 possibilities. You can then quickly determine words made from these letters, which in this case is AMUSING.
Here are common prefixes and suffixes you should familiarize yourself with:
|Common Prefixes||Common Suffixes|
Strategy 5: Use an anagram maker
The tool acts as a multiple word unscrambler, allowing you to unscramble letters to make a phrase or single word. This unscramble words cheat also enables you to unscramble long words and sort the possibilities by word length, as well as by words, phrases, or both.
Plus, you can even click on any unscrambled word to see if it’s valid in the Scrabble Word Dictionary and Words With Friends (WWF). You can also view the definition, any related crossword clues, and how many points it’ll score you in Scrabble and WWF.
Strategy 6: Keep practicing
Routinely practicing unscrambling letters will help you solve crossword puzzles, win Scrabble and Words With Friends, and hammer through various other word games.
When you regularly practice unscrambling words, you’ll naturally start to memorize anagram combinations. You’ll start recognizing patterns and basic combinations of letters, making it easier to unscramble letters more quickly.
Your Turn! Unscramble Letters in These Anagrams
Ready to give it a try?
Go ahead and unscramble letters in the following three anagram scrambles: SUNLIGHT, BLISOSPE, and VOWELS. You should be able to find words with at least these letters. You should also be able to find words made up only from these letters.
You can check your answers and view all word possibilities with the Anagram Solver tool. Good luck!