Oct 192012
 

How can we easily memorize new words in a different language? Different people have different techniques for memorizing new words but there are some basic ways that we can make memorizing easier for us.

The most important part of learning new vocabulary is being able to remember it the first few times you need to, after that a new neural pathway is created in your brain and the link is already established. The first few times you use it though should be a little way apart. It is not as effective using it 3-4 times in 30 seconds as using it 3-4 times in 5 days.

This usually causes the problem; because there is so much information coming to us all the time, we don’t retain everything, we only retain what stands out, what seems significant, and because the new word may not have triggered significance to us, (because it’s a sound we are unfamiliar with and tends then to be thrown out with the rest of the noise) we don’t remember it when we need to use it. This lowers our confidence in our ability, makes us reiterate that “learning languages is difficult” and our brain switches off to protect us from things that are difficult in case we fail at them which would make us feel even worse!

So how do we know what IS significant? Anything that makes us feel an emotion, anything that snaps us out of our normal autopilot filters and makes us take notice.
Try it yourself. What did you do last weekend? You will only be able to remember in detail the significant moments, the things that stand out, the things that made you feel some kind of emotion and that were different to the usual.
However we CAN use this to remember new vocabulary. By using the techniques in this video we can help glue the new word to something we already know with emotion. We can create that emotion by making the link unusual and adding sensory detail to make it clearer.

Then we will be able to overcome the biggest hurdle of new vocabulary, the first 3-4 times usage in context; once we have made these links memorable by gluing them together with emotion we can come back to them in one day/2 days/3 days and we can still remember them. If we can remember them when we need to use them in context, each time we use them in context gives us confidence and adds another layer of glue to the link until eventually we bypass the original image we had and just go from the word in our own language to the word in the foreign language, without even thinking about it.

Give it a try, remember, there is no right or wrong way to do this, only different degrees of effectiveness, and what applies to you, everybody has their own links that will work for them, but the more detail you add and the more unusual you make the image the easier it will be to remember, so get creative and enjoy!

Enjoy English!

EngJoy!

 

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