tips for vocabulary

11 Quick Tips to Build a Strong Vocabulary

Learning new words in a language can be fun when you involve people and things around you. You can express your thoughts better by learning innumerable words with different meanings & use. However, improving your vocabulary is a fantastic goal and can be achieved easily with regular practice. If you are willing to stretch the wings of the linguist in you, this is the right post for you.

Here, I am sharing 11 simple and easy-to-follow vocabulary expanding tips.

  1. Listen and enlist words you don’t know – Listen to radio broadcasts, audio lectures, and more and make a list of unknown words. Look up for their meaning and use in your dictionary.
  2. Read short passages & pick difficult words – Read a novel, magazine, or a random article with difficult to understand words. Populate your list of unknown words and check with your dictionary.
  3. Get a bilingual dictionary – A bilingual dictionary helps you understand difficult words by translating them to your native language. To be honest, I will never carry a hardcover book everywhere, will you? Fortunately, online bilingual dictionaries and mobile apps are available for on-the-go access.
  4. Master lexical sets one-by-one – Start with one set, for instance animals. I bet most of you don’t know English names of all the animals you know. Start making a list of animals by name (in any language) and look for their English names. Once done, proceed to other lexical sets.
  5. A word a day exercise – “Rome wasn’t built in a day” and you can’t learn complete vocabulary at once. There are many apps that show daily pop ups on your phone, or you can sign up on a website to get a word a day delivered to your email inbox.
  6. Learn while playing scrabble – This is really fun to play around with your friends as well as improve your vocabulary. Challenge your friends or family members for a game of scramble and try to create bigger & better words. Don’t forget to use your dictionary.
  7. Translate and practice – Pick up a short passage or a poem in your native language and try creating the best English translation. Tip: You can use your dictionary. When working with poetry, try making the translation as poetic as the original is.
  8. Refer a thesaurus – From the list of words you created and used above, refer a thesaurus to find 3 synonyms for each. Click here for a good thesaurus.
  9. Practice with crosswords – A crossword puzzle is an interactive way to test your mind for already learnt words and further enhance your vocabulary. You can find crosswords online or in your daily newspaper.
  10. Look around & name things you see – Wherever you are, at home, in office, or anywhere else, you can look around and find things you can’t refer to in English. Make a list and refer your dictionary to find out the right word for each.
  11. Use Vocabulary Mnemonics – Using mnemonic helps to learn words in a easy and fun way and is useful for long-term memory. You can learn mnemonic of difficult words HERE

In short, you can practice tips like the ones given above in your everyday life and make enhancing your vocabulary a fun. Give it a go and don’t forget to put newly learned words to regular use, or you might start forgetting them.

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