At Connect Eikaiwa, many ESL (English as a Second Language) students usually come into the school and say, “I can’t have a conversation because I don’t have enough vocabulary.” It is especially important when you want to study for the TOEIC, read the passages in the EIKEN with no confusion, or even give a better answer for the IELTS.
Well, no problem! Here are some ways a student can remember the English that they learn:
Carry around a few words on some card or paper. It doesn’t only help English learners remember words, it also helps them with how to describe them. Also, be sure to study the different forms of the words so you don’t confuse verbs with nouns. At the end of a week of studying review them all. If you can’t remember most of them at the end of the week, may be you are trying to remember too many. I recommend studying 4 new words a day at the beginning.
2. Imagine a situation you’d use them
Use the vocabulary in situations when you can imagine the correct use of the word helps. If the word were “stunning“, try to picture something that you see a lot (maybe a view from a bridge).When you cross that bridge, just think, “The view from here is stunning.”
3.Make a phrase using the word
It’s also important to know how to use the word properly so using a set phrase is best. Instead of studying just “contract,” say “make a contract” or “draw up a contract.” This helps you with grammar.
4. Say the words out loud
When studying, read words out loud so ears can be trained. Repeating them also helps you with muscle memory on how to pronounce them. Your mouth may get really tired when working out those muscles you don’t usually use so take it easy.
5. Write/ Use them in different forms
When you get more comfortable using English, it’s helpful to write out sentences using different forms of the word. My favorite word in the English language is inspire (to encourage someone to do or feel something.) It’s a verb, but do you know the noun, adjective, and adverbs of the word “inspire?” That’s your homework.
6. Write quality sentences
When making sentences, write a sentences that would help readers understand the meaning of the word from the example that you give. Don’t just write short sentences. For example, to learn the word gullible, don’t write a sentence like, “He is gullible.” A better example is, “The boy was so gullible, he believed me when I told him a green elephant came into the room and eat his last cookie.” Can you guess the meaning of the word? Gullible means to believe something too easily (especially lies).
There you have’em. Six ways to improve your English vocabulary studying. Find out which one works for you and you’ll be more prepared for the TOEIC, IELTS, EIKEN, and anything English.
Do you have any fun and effective ways of learning English? If you do, please share them with us at Connect Eikaiwa（コネクト英会話）by leaving a comment below.