Learning a new vocabulary is the basics of learning a new language. There are 171,476 words in the Oxford English Dictionary, and that does not include slang words. This number can sound overwhelming for those wanting to speak English fluently. Here’s the good news – no one knows every word in the English language. Even native English speakers are constantly adding new words to their vocabulary.
As an English language learner, you know that it is critical to develop your English vocabulary. You will constantly be adding new words to your vocabulary as you work on becoming fluent in English.
Fortunately, there are many ways to build your vocabulary. No one way works for each student. Find the learning strategy that works best for you.
To help you get started, below are some of the techniques for learning English vocabulary.
1. Take an English class
If you are looking for the best way to build your English vocabulary, then you must consider taking English courses. One of the best classes to take is taking an English course with Direct English. When you study English with Direct English, you will be fully immersed in the language and the culture making it easier and faster to become fluent.
2. Read, read, and read some more
You must read to build your English vocabulary. Reading in English requires you to learn new words. Your mind will constantly be at work as you try to identify the meaning of the words you are reading in the text.
3. Use a dictionary
With technology, we always have access to a dictionary. Make the dictionary your friend. Download a dictionary to your phone or place a dictionary app on each of your electronic devices. In addition to looking up the meaning of new words, dictionary apps also have learning tools such as the “Word of the day.”
4. Sing a song
Many people find it helpful to sing a song using the vocabulary word. Melodies can help us memorize new words. Make it a practice to sing the definitions of the words you are learning.
5. Draw a picture
Look for ways to understand the new vocabulary word visually if you are a visual learner. For example, as you learn a new word, draw a picture that helps you remember the meaning. If you are not an artist, look for images online that you can print off to help you remember the meaning of words you are trying to add to your English vocabulary.
6. Listen for context clues
Context clues are the hints you can find in a sentence to help you decipher the meaning of a word. When you are reading or listening to someone speaking in English, look for contextual clues or hints. Becoming attuned to looking for context clues will help you in conversation and test-taking.
7. Write the word in a sentence
For others, it is most effective to write the new word. By writing the word in a complete sentence, you are not simply memorizing a new word, but you are also learning how to use the word in context. Many students try to write the new vocabulary word in several sentences to help them see it used in various ways.