Saturday, 16 January 2010

How to really learn vocabulary online 1

There are lots of good places to learn vocabulary online and you will find some of them here on the right. Before you go there and click on the exercises, may I give you a short lesson in vocabulary learning? This is important because you need to use the exercises in the right way. You can click the button and not learn.

You learn vocabulary by using it
You do not really learn a word if you see it one time. What you do there is learn what a word means. This is not the same as knowing how to use the word. You learn how to use a word by using it many times. Opinions differ, but experts would say you need to use a word at least 5/6 times to really learn it.

image courtesy of

How can you use a word?
Using a word can include:

  1. saying it
  2. hearing it
  3. writing it
  4. reading it
Later on I shall be showing you intelligent ways of doing this. For now, I want to leave you with this one, fairly simple, idea. If you understand this properly, your language learning will become much more efficient.

Where can you do this online?
One problem with online learning is that there are not many places which help you learn in this way. One goal of this site is to show places where you can really learn well.

A suggestion: Splendid Speaking - Daily Vocabulary exercise
One of my favourite sites is Splendid Speaking. It's a very large site with many excellent things on it. For now, I just want to show you their Daily Vocabulary exercise.

6 reasons to go there
  1. it's a daily exercise
  2. you get language used in context 
  3. you don't just learn words, you get phrases too
  4. you can do 2 exercises on each phrase
  5. the last exercise asks you to use the phrase for yourself
  6. you can get a worksheet at the end of the week to practise again
And, oh yes, it's completely free

1 comment:

  1. I would like to help others how to learn foreign language. I build vocabulary flashcards. A major benefit of the flashcards is that they are extremely portable, comfortably fit into my pocket. If I am standing in the queue at the movie theatre or the mall I pluck them out kill some time by revising them. To make cards I use Accelebrain tool.