The most difficult part of language acquisition, especially when you’re a beginner, is memorizing the extensive vocabulary of a language. However, it can be made easier when you go for the right strategies and practise them more often.
Remember, there is no one-size-fits-all technique to make it happen. Therefore, we have gathered various effective tips and tricks for you to try out.
A mnemonic is a memory device for memorizing and retaining information. It may include associating a word or other information with something familiar or making a certain pattern out of it. For example, the Portuguese word for “egg” is “ovo” and you can think of an oval shape of the egg to remember it.
Another example can be of the French word “l’argent” which means “money”. To memorize this word, you can associate it with the idea that money is something that one needs on an urgent basis right now.
This way, you can apply it to other words to relate them to the words of your first language by making mental connections.
Learn in context
This is the best tip that works for memorizing words in any language. Whether you do reading, writing, speaking, or listening practices, learning the context is the key to remembering what you have learned. Otherwise, your effort can go wasted.
Learning the context of the target language in real-life situations can make you get a meaningful understanding of the words resulting in remembering them more efficiently.
Interactive Course Content
Interactive lessons, quizzes, gamification, and the incorporation of visual elements make memorizing words much easier. Eton Institute’s modern course design and an outcomes-based approach to learning ensures that the right content and activities get you to fluency in no time.
Additionally, you can track your performance and practice over and over again, and benefit from targeted remediation by which you can easily retain words of a certain language. Our expertly designed language courses are powered by Blackboard.
Watch TV Shows
Another immersive way to learn and memorize words is through TV shows. As a beginner, you have to watch the shows with subtitles in your native language. It gives you alternatives for the words and expressions of your native language making it easier for you to remember them.
Another way to do this is to watch shows in your native language with subtitles in the target language.
This way, you can absorb the words spoken in a natural conversation and can remember them for a long time. Also, you can pause or rewind the part you find difficult to remember to watch it again.
Listen to songs
According to research by Harvard Medical School, music can boost the memory.
“Listening to and performing music reactivates areas of the brain associated with memory, reasoning, speech, emotion, and reward.”
This research mainly focuses on listening to music in general but we can merge the two things to make this practice more productive. It means you can listen to the music of the language you want to learn to boost memory and memorize the words too.
Moreover, you can look up the words in the dictionary you find in the lyrics, it can make you understand the context and remember them better. Also, if you sing along with the songs, it also makes you retain the words.
This technique can never get older as it is one of the best practices for memorizing words. You can utilize either physical or digital flashcards as a vocabulary retention tool.
To use it properly, you can write the words on one side and the meaning with usage in your native language on the other. Test yourself daily by flipping the cards and also keep on adding new cards.
Use learned words in daily life
Practicing the words in daily life can help to add them to the active vocabulary. You must converse in the target language or, at the very least, use all the newly learned words in daily conversation. Apart from this, you can also use these words in writing, for instance, make a story out of these words or use them in texting.
Moreover, you can use them in particular situations. For example if you have learned words related to greeting someone, you can try using them all in starting a conversation with a stranger on a bus, on a train, in a store etc.
Repeat from time to time
Regular and spaced retention can make new words come back to your memory soon before you forget them. Spaced retention is advisable because repeating the words over 100 times a day will not make you remember them for a long time. The retention period maximizes only when there is an appropriate gap.
This technique utilizes the tendency of our brain to remember things for longer periods of time when we come across them more frequently but with time gaps.
To adopt this technique, you can set weekly intervals to review all the previously learned words on one specific day.
Environment also matters
The learning environment can also impact your memorizing ability which is why you have to make it better to make the process of memorisation quick, organized, and productive.
The most suitable types can be:
- A distraction-free space allows you to focus properly on your target stuff for memorization
- A comfortable and calm environment can improve concentration and promote absorbing new information effectively
- A facilitated environment like an institute to get access to better tools and technology can be the best way to facilitate your memorizing capability. The best language learning institutes make sure to provide you with the same type of resourceful environment
To sum it up, memorizing words in any language is a gradual process which needs consistency. Any method/s you choose, remember to be consistent to take full advantage of it.