Words make up a language. Love the words. The words will love you back.
Tip #1: READ.
Although you can always open your dictionary or your vocabulary books and memorize the words written there, I still believe that reading will give you greater chances to increase your vocabulary. Through reading, you are not only going to encounter new vocabularies per se but you are also going to learn how they are being used. A lot of words have the same meanings but what really sets them apart from each other is how they are being used in different situations or conditions.
Tip #2: LEARN THE PHONETICS
When learning new vocabularies, do not focus only on the meanings of the words but also give importance to the correct pronunciation. Pronunciation is very important because it will be easier for you to familiarize yourself with a particular word if you know how it is being pronounced. So that when you hear it in movies or in conversations, you’ll be able to catch that word immediately. It will also be helpful for you in terms of conversations because pronunciation is important in order to make other people understand you more quickly and easily.
Tip #3. THE PEN IS A MIGHTY TOOL
It might be quite old-fashioned but if you like writing memos, then always have a pen with you so that you can always jot down unfamiliar expressions or words you encounter any time of the day. If you don’t want to bring a pen and something to write on, you can always rely on technology and just use your mobile phones or computers instead. Another word of advice is that when you are writing down unfamiliar words or expressions, always write the whole sentence where it was used or the situation. This is not really necessary but it will help you understand the word faster and it will also give you an idea of the word’s usage.
Tip #4: PARTS OF SPEECH
Is the word a noun? a pronoun? a verb? an adjective? an adverb? a conjunction? a preposition? an interjection? You have to know. Knowing the correct part of speech where the word belongs to will make you less confused about the meaning and the usage of the word.
Tip #5: DEFINE AND DISTINGUISH
Definitions are very important in learning new vocabularies. Of course, what’s the point of learning new words if you don’t know their definitions? Just remember that one word may have several definitions so you must also be able to distinguish which particular definition fits a situation. If you have extra time or if you’re willing to exert extra effort in studying vocabulary, you might want to list all the possible definitions of a word and then create examples for each definition. This will help you greatly in distinguishing the correct usage of the word based on the given situation.
Tip #6. ETYMOLOGY
This is optional but is highly encouraged. Knowing the origin of the words is very helpful in guessing the meanings of unfamiliar words. Likewise, prefixes and suffixes are also equally important. Take for example the word “bene” which means “good” as in benefits. If ever you encounter the word “benevolent,” you will somehow have the idea that it is a word related to something good. Benevolent means charitable, good-hearted or showing kindness to others. Another example is the word “semi.” You know that “semi” means “half.” A semicircle is a half circle. If ever you encounter the word semi-annual, you’ll immediately have the idea about its meaning which is “occurring twice in a year.” It’s the same thing with “bi” which means two. A bicycle has two wheels and biannual means twice a year.
Tip #7: PRACTICE
As much as you can, incorporate new words in conversations you make. Of course, leave out the complicated words because they’re mostly used in the academe. Just practice the words as often as you can. If you cannot use them in conversations, write blogs or journals and use them there. The key to learning a language is really through practice. You’ll find that it’s easier to remember a word once you have really started using it.
There you are…! These are just some tips that you may want to consider. Of course, every person has his/her own way of studying and remembering things. These tips might not always work for you but I hope they helped somehow.