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Here's a question that I often get asked:
"How do I learn words?"
Or "What is the best way to remember new vocabulary, to remember new words?"
First of all, the best way to remember new words is just don't worry about it.
The reason I say this is because the more you worry about it,
if you're stressed because you can't remember words,
for example, you studied a word and then in conversation you couldn't remember that word.
The more stressed you get about it, the harder it becomes. Just relax, don't worry about it.
If you learn a word and you forget it the next day, it doesn't matter. Doesn't matter. Just forget
about it
Give it time.
If you do remember the word great, fantastic, but if you don't remember the word it doesn't
matter. Just give it time. Let things come naturally.
This said: There is a learning principle that is a learning idea worth bearing in mind, worth
remembering, that will make your learning English words much much easier. That is that we remember
words best by taking not one but two approaches and linking those two approaches together.
Now the first one is "Deliberate Learning".
That is purposely trying to learn new vocabulary.
This is what you do when you read a newspaper article and you underline the words you don't
know. You look the words up in the dictionary, you write them on flashcards, you study those
flashcards. Or if you use something like an SRS software, something like Anki, for example, and you do reps on Anki
This is deliberate learning. You're trying to learn words. Now that's one way. Now the second
way is to let things come naturally. That is "Accidental Learning". And this is what happens when
you're not trying to learn words, but you're just enjoying the English.
You're watching a TV show, you're listening to some English, you're reading a book.
And maybe you'll be listening to English and then suddenly a word you've been trying to learn
or struggling to remember will pop out and at the moment you will just think AH-HA!! got it.
And then at that point you will never forget that word again.
A good example for me is when I first learning Japanese the word "gyoretsu" now that means
queue as in a queue outside of a shop I think I saw this word first on a flashcard. Now I
thought this is a useful word I should remember this. And I studied it many times but it never
stuck and I'd always try to remember this word but the next day I'd be like "Ah, what
was that?" Just didn't sink in. But then one day, I was listening to a podcast from
japanesepod101, and it wasn't even part of the lesson it wasn't in the dialogue
for the lesson. But the presenters were talking. I can't remember what they were talking about. I think
they might have been talking about a famous ramen shop, a famous noodle shop which always
has a long queue of people outside. But one of the presenters said the word "gyoretsu".
And that was it. It was like a lightbulb went off in my head.
And I never forgot that word. It just stuck.
So what happens is when you try to learn words, you make a connection in here. And then when
you accidentally hear them, you link that together. And it's when you make that link, that the
word sticks.
I don't know if you've ever seen videos from Steven Kaufman, he has lots of videos on YouTube
and I definitely recommend checking them out. But he often talks about making links and
it's true that the most powerful way to learn words is to just make links between different
things. So don't do one thing; do two things or do many things and let...just let the words come to
you naturally. Make links between those things; study a word; listen to English when you hear
it, you'll remember it. Easy as that.
OK, well, that's it for today. So, until next time,
as always, any questions, anything you want to ask, any comments, leave a message in the
comments box.
OK until next time.
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"How to Learn Words" The two way approach to learning English vocabulary

94544 Folder Collection
VoiceTube published on July 2, 2013    Amber translated    Halu Hsieh reviewed
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