Here are the devices of 8 experts for the best ways to memorize vocabulary in another language. Let’s take their information!
Memory gurus and their techniques
The brain can store memories in a variety of ways. Flashcards, picture associations, or even number associations can all be used to help you remember a word. Mnemonics are the name given to these methods.
A vast area of science is devoted to studying memory. Mnemonists are people who have an extraordinary memory. Some of them are memory trainers as well.
Many methods like this, developed by memory gurus, add to the fun and effectiveness of learning a language. The contributions from the eight mnemonists are listed below. Recognize their strategies and use them in your language learning efforts.
Bartosz Czekala: Encode and retrieve when you fail to recall
The study of memory is a vast field. Many excellent memory techniques might aid you in learning words in a foreign language. My advice is to focus on the unavoidable failure to remember a term. It doesn’t matter if it occurred while talking to someone or studying your flashcards.
The feedback from this failure is disregarded by 99.9% of all language learners. Most of the time, it indicates that you haven’t encountered this word, the settings in which the information was encoded enough, or both. Concentrating on such words is crucial. Be careful to encode them again in other circumstances if you cannot recall them.
We are more likely to recall the desired information smoothly the more significant the overlap between what we encode and retrieve. Pay special attention when you can’t think of a word. Concentrating on such terms is crucial. Be careful to encode them again in other circumstances if you cannot recall them.
If you have trouble remembering words, encode them repeatedly in various situations. Bartosz Czekala is a multilingual memory specialist, qualified nutritionist, personal coach, and trichologist constantly learning new things.
Katie Kermode: Visualize scenarios to remember a word
Concentrate on the terms that are difficult for you to recall. Create a brief statement or scene connecting the period you are learning with a word or phrase from your language by thinking of a similarity. Put it where you initially thought of the original term when you think of it in your thoughts.
I might envision myself feeling too hot and saying, “I need a fan to let in some air,” turning on the fan and taking in the cool air if I were learning the Spanish word for fan, “el ventilador” for instance. This phrase demonstrates the connection between “fan” and “to let in.”
The first place that comes to mind when I think of a fan is the area of my bedroom where I would typically plug the fan in. This is where I would picture this minor situation. Then, when attempting to recall the term “fan,” I mentally transport myself to that spot and relive the incident.
To routinely review these concepts, utilize spaced repetition flashcards. Make a brief sentence or scene that connects a word from your home tongue with the topic you are learning.
UK memory competitor Katie Kermode has been competing since 2008. Additionally, she is a four-time UK memory champion and a freelance translator and memory coach. And she holds the title of IAM Grandmaster of Memory (Silver).
Sushant Mysorekar: Have several interests in understanding vocabulary
The essential prerequisite for learning any language’s speech is an interest in various things. The mother of memory is attractive, and the father of memory is attentive. Others are related, including interest and many others.
The language you want to learn must be heard, tasted, smelled, and lived. The method for learning vocabulary I developed and copyrighted is known as SAB-CINEMAS.
- S– Put that word in front of you into a scene.
- A–Associating, combining, or working with related sounds or objects.
- B– Bizarre. Make a strange story out of it.
- C– Light-dark colors can be added to the words to indicate their intensity.
- I– visualize using your mouth motions, facial expressions, and phrases.
- N– Connect easily by using numbers and sounds from different languages.
- E– If you could add your expression when you pronounced a specific vocabulary word, it would help you remember it more easily.
- M– Any word you use to identify yourself in a statement, tag, or proverb tends to stick with you for a long time.
- A– To gain a deeper understanding, animate the word in an iconic image and doodle with it.
- S– Consciously engage your senses.
“The mother and father of memory are interest and attention.” (Sushant Mysorekar) The 2019 editions of “Super Tips for Super Memory” and “Super Power Memory for Busy Professionals” were authored by Sushant Mysorekar, an author and internationally recognized intelligence coach.
John Graham: Use the linking method
Apply the linking technique! It’s a memory trick that entails making a straightforward, visual narrative. In essence, you “connect” an association with the foreign word’s meaning to the association with the association for the term itself.
Viento means “wind” in the Spanish language. A vent comes to mind when I think about Viento. Now I only think of the wind passing through a vent. The word for beach in Spanish is Playa, for instance. Playa has the phonics “pla ya.”
I associate “pla” with “play” and “ya” with “yanked.” Now I create a visual story that combines the beach with leisure and heave. I picture individuals practicing their relaxation, and some boats heaved on the beach. Playa! Here, there are no rules. Pronounce the word and then make an association depending on how it sounds.
Although I don’t advise utilizing this method for every word you learn, you can use it to help you remember the more difficult words and phrases that aren’t staying. I am making a straightforward, visual story using the Linking Method.
(John Graham) The 2018 USA Memory Champion and Grandmaster of Memory is John Graham.
Nishant Kasibhatla: When learning is fun, it is easy
Combining Visualization, Association, and Fun is one of the most effective strategies for memorizing words in a foreign language. Visualization aids in helping you “see” the word in your mind’s eye because most people remember images better than words.
Associating a term with something you already know helps you remember it. This makes it easier for you to pay attention and retain the word. You’ll be more likely to enjoy the procedure if you approach it pleasantly. That’s why I often say that learning is simple when it’s enjoyable. Here is an illustration of how to carry out all of that.
I’ll picture my front door as a PORTAL to a mysterious realm to help you remember that the Spanish term for a door is “Porta.” Along with these benefits, they understand how memory functions—particularly in retention and recall—will help you memorize information more quickly.
One of the most effective methods for memorizing words in a foreign language is to combine Visualization, Association, and Fun. (Nishant Kasibhatla) Grand Master of Memory Nishant Kasibhatla holds the 2011 Memory Guinness World Record and is the creator of the online course “Supercharge Your Memory Power,” which aims to improve students’ recollection of names, books, speeches, and words.
Francis Blondin: Use memory techniques
To recall the word “Lapalissiano” and its obvious meaning, I may picture a runner doing “laps” while complaining about a huge “lice” on his head. This is not the best method to run, in my opinion. “Lapalissiano” is roughly formed from the words “laps” and “lice.”
It’s not a perfect trick, but it will work—at least initially. Even a lousy scheme that roughly only reflects a single word can be helpful. For simple things, you don’t need to utilize such tricks, but you can always opt to employ the dark voodoo magic of memory tricks for everything else! It becomes more straightforward and more enjoyable the more you utilize them.
Immediately, a few even more crucial tools:
- Sleep! How much do you require at regular intervals? Stop operating below half of your potential!
- Keep an eye out! Overall, shorter bursts of focused attention are more efficient than longer bursts of continual distraction.
- Practice retrieval. Test yourself instead of just listening or reading. This is a very effective learning method and a tool to assess what has been retained.
- Employ spaced repetition. Review as often as necessary to start, then less frequently as time goes on. Generally, it would be best to double the interval after each successful attempt. Anki, a free program, can aid in streamlining the procedure.
“It gets easier and more enjoyable the more tricks you utilize.”
Dr. Boris Nikolai Konrad: Use a memory palace
My suggestion is to use retrieval practice together with the term mnemonic. I look for an image that will serve as a visual reminder of the term I want to learn. I then integrate the accurate translation with my keyword image. I imagine myself heating the beverage in the tazza with a taser. On my desk, I can see myself scribbling a van.
I test myself early to ensure that these terms stick in my long-term memory. For that, a tool like Anki is fantastic. Occasionally, I’ll use a memory palace to compile several phrases and words from a specific situation.
“I seek a picture for a new term that conjures up a familiar word. The translation and my image are then combined.
– Boris Nikolai Konrad, M.D. Memory expert Dr. Boris Nikolai Konrad has four Guinness World Records and is well-known worldwide.
Edward Cooke: Learning must fit into your life easily
What is the best way to efficiently learn a new language? Where should I start? Do I still have time? Before asking yourself, “How do I know? Think to yourself:
- When can I start learning?
- Can I study a foreign language by myself?
- What motivates me to accomplish this? And how can I continue to be inspired?
Using your target language in various contexts is essential for successful language immersion.
You can, for instance:
- Watching movies and TV shows can help you learn a language (yes, Netflix can help you do that).
- Playing video games or board games can help you learn a language.
- Through podcasts and audiobooks, learn new languages.
- Watch movies and television shows in your target language (with subtitles).
- You can learn a language by listening to music on Spotify and concentrating on the lyrics.
- Reading children’s books in the language you’re learning will help you become familiar with its vocabulary, grammar, and sentence structure.
At this point, diving into an adult novel will only confuse you. It MUST be convenient for you, allowing you to learn quickly and on your schedule while maintaining your motivation. You may learn vocabulary in any language and retain words quickly if you follow the advice above.
“Input your target language in multiple ways is the key to language immersion,”
– Ed Cooke
Edward Cooke is a recognized expert in memory coaching and language and memory coaching.
Follow this advice from the 8 experts
Here is a summary of the suggestions made by our contributors:
- Please pay close attention because it will happen when you can’t remember a word.
- Make sure to re-encode terms in various settings if you have trouble remembering them.
- The more seamlessly we can recall the desired information, the more significant the overlap between what we encode and retrieve.
- Make a brief sentence or scene that connects a word you want to remember and its counterpart in your mother tongue.
- Use spaced repetition flashcards to review these concepts routinely.
- Imagine this little scenario in the most suitable setting whenever you hear that phrase, then mentally transport yourself there and bring up the situation.
- Create multiple interest lists to comprehend the vocabulary of any language
- It would be best if you experienced the language you want to learn in all five senses.
- Employ SAB-CINEMAS
- Use the linking method to connect a foreign word’s relationship to its meaning.
- By sounding it out, make an association based on how the word sounds to you.
- To remember the more difficult words and phrases that aren’t sticking, use the Linking Method.
- Use a blend of fun, association, and visualization
- You can “see” the word in your mind’s eye with visualization.
- Your ability to memorize things faster depends on your understanding of memory functions.
- Even a lousy trick that roughly only represents one letter of a word can be helpful.
- Utilizing approaches more frequently makes things more accessible and enjoyable.
Dr. Boris Nikolai Konrad
- Combine retrieval practice with the term mnemonic
- Find a picture of the word.
- Use a memory palace to gather multiple words and phrases from a specific context.
- Put your desired language into various fields.
- Your chosen language or topic MUST be practical for you.
- Keep yourself motivated while learning at your speed and on your own time.
From theory to practice
Trying to memorize words or vocabulary in a foreign language may initially seem overwhelming to a language student. But if you adhere to the numerous strategies mentioned by the memory specialists mentioned above, you will find that acquiring vocabulary in other languages comes naturally to you.
Check out the documentary “How to learn languages fast” to discover more about the science of language learning. Continue to translate in your mind.