How can you learn new words in English and make them stick?
Every day, you learn new words in English. You want to remember them, but they slip away. How can you make them stick in your brain? How can you come up with them when you need them?
The key is to use the words you are learning again and again—and in a variety of ways.
Tip #1-4: Write Them Down
Make Flashcards: They can be electronic through an app like Quizlet, or they can be on old-fashioned 3 by 5 cards. They can include definitions, pronunciation, examples sentences, and grammatical information. Review them daily.
Keep a Vocabulary Notebook: In your notebook, you can write more extensive definitions. You can draw pictures that help you understand the word, or you can cut out pictures or examples from magazines and newspapers. The important thing is to put the word into a context. Make a system. Make opposites red. Make synonyms blue. Make examples green. Review your notebook daily.
Write a Blog: Take the vocabulary from your flashcards and your notebook and use it to write a blog in English. A blog is a great way to practice what you are learning as well as create memories for the future. If you are studying English abroad, it is a wonderful way to remember your time in a foreign country.
Write Letters and Postcards: Practice your new vocabulary by including in in letters and postcards. If you don’t have anyone to write in English, you could look for a pen pal in a nursing home (a home for elderly people), a hospital, or a school. You could be brave and send a letter to the editor of a newspaper. You could write a letter to a company that you like or don’t like.
Tip #5-8: Say Them
Start Conversations with People: Use your vocabulary with new people at the bus stop, on the bus, in a coffee shop, at a laundromat, or at a store. Make it your goal to talk to someone new every day.
Look Online and Find a Meetup Group: If you are in the U.S., go to Meetup.com
and find a group that interests you. There are groups for people who are single, who have the same hobby, who have the same kind of pet, who love the same sport, and hundreds more. Try out your new words with the people that you meet there.
: This organization has speaking groups in every American city. They practice giving long and short speeches about a variety of topics. You can visit for free.
Volunteer: Find a skill you have that you can share. Talk with the elderly, help schoolchildren, serve food to the homeless, work with others to clean up a park. Practice your vocabulary as you work together.
In conclusion, just trying to study English vocabulary from a book or in a class isn’t enough. You have to use what you are learning every day and in a variety of ways to make it stick!!