Can you please tell me the best way to use the cue cards? I have tried to use this flicking through the random shuffle - but for some reason the new words I have to learn do not stick in my head.
I’d be interested to hear what is the recommend or best way to use these as a part my learning.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Lib, working through Flash Cards is only way to help you become more attentive to new vocabulary, and eventually learn them. I do not find that studying Flash Cards in and of itself enables me to learn them.
It does, however, help me to focus on these words for a while, looking at the captured phrase, trying to notice the similarities between words etc. When I combine this with reviewing the words when they appear in yellow in my lessons here, and the occasional review of lists in the vocabulary section, including tagged lists, over a period of time, a number of words are naturally added to my known words. It is not only the words that I deliberately work on, but a lot of other words, incidental words, that are added to my vocabulary in this way. You just have to do all of these things, read, review, as well as listen, and gradually the words stick.
I never expect that a Flash Card review will enable me to remember the words.
There is another option too, which I personally use.
Don’t use the cards at all. Just keep reading and listening. I’m finding that I’m just learning words through the exposure and hovering over them while going along.
There is evidence that studying the bits and pieces, looking at the individual words and phrases we are trying to learn, for example in the form of Flash Cards or lists, or cloze tests or other ways, is effective in vocabulary acquisition if combined with a lot of input.
Ultimately it boils down to personal preference. I like to combine the two, although I spend more time listening and reading than reviewing words in Flash Cards.
At the moment, for Dutch, I’m going through the Harry Potter books on LingQ. Over Most of my known words and most of my LingQs have come from these (I’m on the 10th chapter of the second book at the moment). So far (after 1 month), I’ve learned 251 words with LingQ and I think that almost all of them have come through the HP books. Many more words are on the verge of moving to level 4. Sometimes I know a word very well in a certain context but not well in others, so I hold them back. I’ve still got several thousand words to learn and probably several thousand more LingQs which will be added. I might reach 10,000 LingQs just with these 7 books! Pretty amazing.
The great thing about fiction (especially fantasy) is that there is a huge amount of vocabulary. It’s a description rich genre on average. After I’m done with these I’ll move onto the Lord of the Rings series. I can only imagine how many extra words I will find going through those!
Even if I only permanently hold onto a few thousand words from going through such books, I will have greatly increased my vocabulary.
I think that we both ‘review’ words, Steve, but in different ways. You’re doing a sort of active review process, mine is largely passive as I hover over the “LingQed” words as I’m listening. Certainly both work. Perhaps I should try out some flashcard practice as it’s not something which bothers me. Is it possible to do a big session of all words? I’d love to just sit back listening to some audiobook for a couple hours and go through as many words as possible (till I get tired or bored hehe).
Maybe there are some other ways that someone out there would like to share with us?
Actually, I’ve just noticed that I can do 100 words at a time. I just thought too, 5500 words at once? Hehe, not a good idea.
Thanks for the ideas and comments so far - I think in time I will find a way in which the flashcards work for me! Being a newbie to the site I thought perhaps I had missed the best way to use these - but clearly it is a case for personal preference! It would be cool if the occasional work popped up at various different stages to test our knowledge along the way - that way it may not be in context and may perhaps aid the “parking” of the new words in my head! He says like it will be easy Currently I am taking the words at making them into phrases of the day - where I attempt to utilise them in my spoken french at least 3 times a day!
Good work. Do what works best for you. Also, don’t be afraid to try something new. You’ll find that your methods will perhaps change as you become more experienced with the language. I tend to retain words better in a language I know fairly well already. It’s like they fit better into the ‘web’.
For some people, including me, writing out definitions longhand (i.e., with pencil and paper) seems to help cement the word in memory. Just mentally or vocally repeating the words and their definitions does not work nearly so well. For instance, when I learned to read Latin, I would write each new word and its definition 3 times. It was tedious, but I learned the words very well. I’ve been trying just to use electronic flashcards lately, with Russian, and so far this doesn’t seem to work as well. Perhaps a hybrid method–e-cards to winnow out the easy words and writing-out to deal with the rest–will work. I haven’t tried that yet.
I also find writing out words and their definitions to be an effective method. When I use textbooks at the beginning stages of learning a language, I always write out the vocabulary lists and then go on to read and write out the dialogues. There’s some pleasure to be had in writing things out. I’m not sure why but for us at least there seems to be a connection between writing and memorisation.
Thanks for bringing that up Ernie.
Agreed, writing the words out has worked for me in many ways - I have a little note book that I carry in my car and bag - I write down any new words I hear so that I can later translate them and write out some sentences with these in - I also find the reverse useful also where if I am in the car or somewhere and I am wondering what a particular word in English is in French I also jot that down - then when I am somewhere suitable I get the dictionary out and find it - rest assured not whilst I am driving Thanks for the reminder of jotting things down - this will be a useful way of using the cards also.