Learning new English Word vocabulary can be difficult and frustrating when you’re trying to memorize it by definition alone. You probably already know that translating new vocabulary into your native language before learning it in English can help you remember the word more easily, but this method can be cumbersome and time-consuming, especially if you’re trying to learn hundreds of new words at once! Luckily, there are numerous tricks that can make the process of memorizing new English vocabulary easier, faster, and more fun! Try using these 7 tricks to never forget a new English word again!
1. Make sure the english word has meaning
The first step in the vocabulary-learning process is choosing the english words you want to remember. Don’t just pick out random words from the dictionary and try to learn them all at once; instead, make sure the word has meaning for you. The easiest way to do that is by thinking about how it relates back to things you already know about—it could be an activity or hobby, something from your job, or even something in your everyday life.
2. Break down words into syllables
There are three syllables in filmography, for example. Learning how to pronounce words you’re trying to memorize can help you remember them better down the line—and seeing it on paper is only half of that equation. To get started breaking down words into syllables, try writing them down as you read: If a english word has five letters and starts with p-l-e-n, it’s likely that its first syllable is plen (the p and l represent silent letters). Then consider what syllables feel like they have more weight or impact than others in your mouth.
3. Say it out loud
Saying words out loud is great way to help commit them to memory. This might sound like a no-brainer, but it’s surprising how many people rely solely on memorization techniques that don’t involve saying anything out loud. If you’re trying to learn a new word, make sure you use it in conversation as soon as possible—you won’t remember it otherwise. Vocal repetition can be incredibly effective when used in conjunction with other memorization techniques; just saying something out loud doesn’t guarantee long-term recall.
4. Write it down in different styles
You could easily write down or say aloud your new word 10 different times, in fact you should! But I like to take it one step further by also writing down my words in different styles and forms. Here’s an example: The word accurate. If you look it up in a dictionary, you might find that its written in italics or underlined (or not). You might also see that it is spelled with a u and an i (accurately) instead of two us. Those things help me when I want to remember what accurate looks like on paper – and I never forget again!
5. Associate it with another english word
When memorizing new words, it’s helpful to associate them with a word you already know. For example, encumber and embarrass, or insidious and infectious. Once you have one word down, it becomes much easier to remember another because you’ve started creating connections in your mind. This trick can work with any kind of vocabulary from new concepts (like medical terms) to business-related vocabulary. Associating financial terms with monetary values is especially useful because they’re often similar sounding or have a visual similarity.
6. Use a mnemonic device (memory device)
Mnemonic devices make new information easier to learn, which will make it easier for you to never forget a new word again. As an example, consider how many people have an issue remembering U.S. states and their capitals because they are seemingly random lists of words that don’t form a sentence or rhyme; however, using mnemonic devices helps bridge that gap so people can better commit information to memory. One such device is called Method of Loci (LOC-ee), in which you use a familiar sequence of places as cues for pieces of information you need to remember, such as state capitals and their locations.
7. Use an audio recording tool
It’s essential that you actually listen to your flashcards—don’t just look at them. This ensures that you don’t accidentally fixate on a word’s spelling or definition and forget how it sounds. With Spaced Repetition Software (SRS), e.g. Anki or SuperMemo, words will be shown over and over again until you remember them—but only at increasing intervals as you show mastery of each word. If you don’t have access to an SRS tool, try out our DIY method for memorizing vocabulary using Ever note on our sister site! Or if audio isn’t your thing, text-based flashcards work too! To use Spaced Repetition Software (SRS), e.g.