How to Study
Do you want to know how to study vocabulary words? First, get a
list of them. A vocabulary
is a group of
words that belong to a certain subject.
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Here are some examples:
- A list of common verbs (be, go, do, have, etc.)
- A list of weather adjectives (rainy, sunny,
- A list of family nouns (mother, father, sister,
brother, uncle, etc.)
You can visit Vocabulary
Websites (Word Lists) section for some useful word lists. You can also take advantage of our illustrated lessons with word lists for different topics and situations. For example: restaurant vocabulary, airport vocabulary, wedding vocabulary, sports vocabulary, banking vocabulary, etc.: English Vocabulary Word Lists (Illustrated).
Now, how do you study
these word lists?
There are a few things you can do.
1. Make up example sentences with each word on
the word or memorizing it is not enough, at least not in most
cases. But using the new word in sentences of your own, can
really take you one giant step forward. Try it yourself, and see the
example, let's say you are learning the word "resign" (which means "to
leave your job"). You can make up some example sentences:
- "I am sorry, but I must resign."
- "The new manager is already leaving, he
- "She loves her job and she will never resign."
2. Use the words in a story.
the list of words and write a short story with all of them.
story doesn't even have to make perfect sense. Even better – make it
ridiculous! This can actually be fun. Check out the following example.
Let's say you are studying some verbs beginning with the letter E:
You can write a short story such as this:
"Andy was eating
dinner and enjoying
a quiet evening, when he started thinking about his future. He estimated
amount of money he must earn
3. Write the words on flashcards and practice
Vocabulary flashcards are special cards that you use to memorize data.
They are called that way because the cards are flashed
(shown quickly) to the learner. There are several things you can have
on a flashcard: a word in English, a word in your own
language, a photo
or an illustration.
For example, you can prepare a set of cards
with "food words". Write the English word on one side of the card, and
on the other side put a picture, or write the translation in your own
Here are two examples of food flashcards (the front side of the card is
on the left, and the back side of the card is on the right):
Vocabulary flashcards are good tools to use while learning a new
language. The bonus in using them is that you turn it into a game.
4. Use dictations to help you memorize spelling.
Make a dictation. You can do it all by yourself. Simply follow this
- Write the
words (usually no more than ten at once) on a piece of paper. Use two
columns: one for English, and one for the translation in
- Fold in the piece of paper so that you can only
see the translation in your own language.
another piece of paper and write the English words that
match the translated words. Don't look at the answers! The
is remembering by heart.
- When finished, compare the English words you
have just written to the ones on the original paper.
At first, you might not do so well. Don't worry about it. After a few
times you won't believe how much you have improved!
word of warning though: don't use a big portion of your time for
dictations. Just like flashcards, they work on simple memorization,
rather than understanding. Therefore, you should use them as a
supplemental exercise, and not as the main one. If you don't practice
using these words later on, you can definitely forget them in the
5. Practice the words in a conversation with a
are good friends for? Grab a friend, tell him or her what you need, and
start practicing! Make a conversation, and try to use as many new
words as possible. The conversation doesn't have to make
Actually, sometimes it is more fun if it doesn't... The important thing
is that you improve your vocabulary and have some good laughs in the process!
Visit the Vocabulary
section to improve your vocabulary!