How can you remember all the new words you read and listen to in English?
I have the answer.
And it will surprise you.
Keep reading . . .
My answer has two parts.
#1: We’ll start with the wrong answer to this question: Spend lots of time “studying” a list of words, trying to “memorize” and “review” words over and over again.
This “just study” method is actually the slowest possible way to improve your vocabulary.
In fact, it is up to 10 times slower than the right way to do it!
Part of the reason is this: there are just too many words to try to study and review them one by one.
You will probably die before you have enough time to memorize words individually.
But the main reason “studying” is so inefficient (slow) is that the brain learns new words fastest by doing something much easier.
That leads us to . . .
#2: The right way to learn new words is: Get a LOT of “comprehensible input.”
What’s “comprehensible input”?
Comprehensible input is just a scientific name for “reading and listening to things you can understand” (comprehensible = “able to understand it”).
So the “secret” to remembering lots of new words is simply to read and listen, especially to things you enjoy. (If you enjoy it, you’ll do more reading and listening.)
Now, you may be thinking: “Jeff, this must be wrong. I read and listen to many things but I still can’t remember some of the new words I see!”
Of course you don’t remember many of them, especially after seeing them only once. Neither do I.
But here’s what you do NOT notice or see: Every time you read a new word in a book or hear it somewhere, your brain is learning a small percentage of what that word means.
Maybe it’s only 5% or 10% or 15%.
But the next time you see it, you will gain a little more knowledge. And so on and so on.
Before you realize it, by doing lots of reading and listening, you’ve picked up (learned) 100% of the word.
A recent study found that reading can give you anywhere between 5 and 10 new words an hour.
That’s much, much faster than trying to study or “memorize” words.
Obviously, the most important and useful words are the ones you will see over and over again. So just reading and listening will give you all of the words you really need to know.
“But do you have proof this works?”
“And will it work for speaking, writing, grammar etc.?”
I’m glad you asked!
I wrote a special 9-page special report that explains in detail how we learn languages, including not only vocabulary, but grammar, speaking, pronunciation, and more.
You can get it below by filling in your name and email address.
It will change the way you learn languages, I promise.
Get the report today:
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