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Your best vocabulary learning methods?

 Language Learning Forum : Learning Techniques, Methods & Strategies Post Reply
58 messages over 8 pages: 1 2 3 4 57 8 Next >>
Serpent
Octoglot
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Russian Federation
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 Message 41 of 58
06 June 2015 at 8:26pm | IP Logged 
rtickner wrote:
Why would you want to take 500 hours to learn what you could learn in 100 hours?

I wasn't comparing 500 hours of reading with 100 hours of SRS. I just meant that the average efficiency per hour depends on how many hours you do. It's similar to how as a beginner you can learn a lot in a short time. With SRS, eventually there will be leeches and old cards you don't like anymore and boring cards you feel bad about deleting and easy cards that you want to keep anyway. In reading the difficulties are just more immediately obvious, unless you read with like 98% comprehension. Reading becomes more fun with time, SRS/Memrise get less fun with time and are the most enjoyable when you first start them.

Furthermore, SRS'ing for that many hours is generally not very sustainable anyway. And it gets less sustainable if the cards aren't reinforced by input.

Edited by Serpent on 06 June 2015 at 8:38pm

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rtickner
Diglot
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 Message 42 of 58
07 June 2015 at 12:13am | IP Logged 
Thanks for the clarification, I agree with your long term approach and other general
comments. I should have made it more clear that I was talking about short term gains.
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1e4e6
Octoglot
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United Kingdom
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 Message 43 of 58
07 June 2015 at 7:57am | IP Logged 
Very rarely do I explicitly learn vocabulary, but I have books that have grouped
vocabulary based on topic, like Berlitz: Spanish Vocabulary Handbook. Instead
of just random vocabulary, it is in groups for each page, for example "Accidents and
Emergencies", "Poverty and Social Services", "Cooking & Eating", etc. with vocabulary
that often is seen with some frequency but not enough for it to stick to use
accurately and quickly either in writing or spontaneously in conversation. I find that
this tpe of resource is good for any level, from A1 to C2, because some of the
vocabulary if wished can be omitted at lower levels, and the more detailed ones learnt
at C levels. Unfortunately it is in English, but that is what is available in
Anglophone bookstores.

For example, there is an entry in one of the sectiones for "Science" of "sandstone: la
piedra arenisca". I am not sure if I have ever seen any word in either language nor
ever used it, but if I had to I would recognise it and now I remember it enough to use
it if I need it. And given that the book is only 248 pages long and serves as close to
my only real source for explicit vocabulary learning in this language, if I did this
for every other target language, it would not take me very much time. The time I spent
on grammar was probably at least 50 times longer than the time that I spent on
explicit vocabulary learning.
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Cavesa
Triglot
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Czech Republic
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 Message 44 of 58
07 June 2015 at 8:39am | IP Logged 
I've been using sandstones in my favourite computer game to mend some of my weapons for years :-D So, I've been asking about sandstone loads, borowing sandstones, donating sandstones quite a lot. But, now that I think of it, I remember using the word in Czech as well, in the geology classes and sometimes in museums. A nice example of totally different needs of each learner.

Your books sounds interesting 1e4e6, approximately how many words are there? I have got some similar resources but Berlitz might be good and available for other languages than Spanish as well.
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1e4e6
Octoglot
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 Message 45 of 58
07 June 2015 at 8:55pm | IP Logged 
I used to play WoW for a few years when I was a teenager. I encountered quite a lot of
fauna and stuff, but I am not sure about sandstones. I know that there is hearthstone
(I am not sure what the hell this really is in terms of biology up to now).

The book has around 40-50 vocabulary words per page, with a few sample sentences using
the important words at the bottom. I have a weird method, where I try to master the
grammar explicitly over and over until I can reproduce it as fast as I can in any
situation, but neglect explicit vocabulary except for books like this one. I bought
this one in a bookstore, so I am not sure if there are for other languages.

The book is available to look inside in Amazon.co.uk:

Berlitz: Spanish Vocabulary Handbook

In terms of learning vocabulary in other ways, I usually just read things like the
news and magazines like Página12. One thing that
I like to do is that when I encounter a new word, I figure out its meaning from
context without using dictionary and use it in writing myself.
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patrickwilken
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Germany
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 Message 46 of 58
07 June 2015 at 9:09pm | IP Logged 
BTW: Unless this is a new use of the word, it's "sandstone" not "sandstones". There is no plural form, just like with basalt or granite or marble (the stone not the game).
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Cavesa
Triglot
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Czech Republic
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 Message 47 of 58
07 June 2015 at 9:11pm | IP Logged 
True, thanks. My apologies.
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Iversen
Super Polyglot
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 Message 48 of 58
08 June 2015 at 7:43am | IP Logged 
Actually sandstone has a plural, which is used when you refer to different kinds of sandstone (quote Wikipedia: "Some sandstones are resistant to weathering, yet are easy to work."). But if you already know the word sandstone you can easily add the fact that there is this special use of the plural when you see it in a concrete text. Which illustrates that you don't need to learn everything at once about the words you add to your vocabulary. The important thing is to get the word nailed, and then you can elaborate on its meaning(s) and uses later.


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