I’ve recently read an article about vocabulary on lingoholic.com
– a really useful and encouraging website to aid language learning. I’ll link the full article at the bottom of this post but in essence I’m interested in trialling the methods outlined. Some of them don’t automatically appeal but I’m intrigued by how others have adapted them to make them more enjoyable. I’m going to try to do that as well. So, for two months I’m going to set 15-20mins aside for a task. I’m not sure how motivated I’ll feel throughout the whole process but I am particularly drawn to learning vocabulary from a contextual perspective as I’ve recently seen this method in a couple of Chinese textbooks and wondered about the success of such approaches. Anyway, here are the methods I’m going to try.
1. GoldList Method
Date the page
Left – Language being learned (I’m going to use Japanese)
Right – native language (English for me)
Write out vocabulary, reading it out aloud (20mins) followed by a 10min break.
No attempt to memorize
Activity is as regular as I like (every day, every month etc) but in a single day not to do any more than ten sessions.
Two weeks later read through the list – 30% should be retained. Discard the words I know and write the remaining 17 words on the same sheet as the original
Repeat this distillation process ten times with a two week break in between each time.
What I will do
I’ll be using my N3 word list and will even attempt to adapt this with a three column method – Kanji, Kana, English. I’ve seen a Youtube clip of someone using this same method with successully with Mandarin so I’m willing to try the same.
2. Luca Lampariello’s Natural Approach to Remembering Words
Learning through context using back-and-forth translation exercises.
Learn through context by reading as much as possible and being engaged (actually interested) in what is being learned.
A few days later go through translations and try to translate them back to the target language.
some people have responded to this method by offering their adaptations of its principles. One way is to watch films or read books that they are already familiar with in their own language before tackling the target language version
What I will do
Japanese: ‘Monster’ manga volume 1, ‘Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone’. This will be interesting as I really want to read these texts anyway but in particular I’m wondering if reading ‘Monster’ will assist me (hinder me?) in my Kanji learning.
Chinese: Use my podcast resources for this. Nice short sentences with useful translations and consolidating audio as well. Looking forward to this as I already spend time enjoying these podcasts, particularly with shadowing, so it will bit fun to do another activity with them.
Full article of vocabulary acquisition: