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Making Vocabulary Learning Permanent

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Vocabulary plays an important role in being able to communicate. And after you begin to learn a foreign language, communicating is the essential skill to promote. There are various techniques of vocabulary instruction, but are they effective for teaching and encouraging long-term learning?

Teaching vocabulary is a really fun aspect of teaching English. Many English teachers have several effective methods to teach new vocabulary. But it is still one of the most difficult pieces. Particularly keeping track of how well students remember what they've studied and how well they use new vocabulary. What is the most powerful method of teaching vocabulary such that students do not feel as if they have forgotten all the terms immediately after the exam? There isn't any one magical way to do it, of course. So I strive in certain respects to inspire you. Here you can find some post-lesson ideas for vocabulary building after the class.

The first and most important way to boost vocabulary is reading. Reading is the most effective long-term way to boost vocabulary. When learners spend their time on reading, they meet many of the words and lexical (word) patterns that are taught in their textbooks. They are exposed to them in different contexts and in different kinds of sentences, so they see them over and over again. Reading allows the learner to revise the vocabulary they learned, learn the formation of these words, and develop an awareness of collocations and thousands of lexical phrases. When I was teaching at primary school, we had a library in our class. There were different resources from story books to magazines to read on different subjects. My students’ favourite reading texts was from National Geographic Kids magazine. They have many kinds of reading texts supported by real pictures such as animals, oceans, and one of the favourites was the “Weird but True” series. This magazine not only encouraged them to revise the vocabulary taught in the class but allowed them to develop new vocabulary and studied several interesting topics like our world, as well. National Geographic magazines are also a decent source of higher-level reading.

Secondly, Students must be exposed to vocabulary in a variety of meaningful ways. The more often the taught language appears, the easier the understanding and memorizing of these terms would be. Using films in class to teach English is not a novel approach since they have the best authentic content that most teachers need. I send a scene or video clip from one of my students’ favourite films to them via instant messaging tools or an online classroom community like Google Classroom. When they watch the videos, they see the vocabulary that they have learned in the previous lesson in a different and real-life context. Alternatively, for intermediate or upper- intermediate learners, the Voscreen software may be used to learn new chunks from film prompts or to participate in some paraphrasing exercises. 

Lastly, Students must process the words they have acquired in their own unique manner. Giving writing assignments is a popular method of revising vocabulary. However, how about doing something different? Instead of writing essays or blogs for homework, I instruct my students to use the Visual Note-Taking Strategy to turn in their assignments or presentations. The Visual Note-Taking Strategy is known as the non-linguistic representation of knowledge. This simply means through images. It can be as basic as drawings or doodles, or it can be as complicated as Mind Mapping or Concept Mapping. It increases the student's ability to remember, recall, and comprehend new vocabulary. Furthermore, it's usually more fun and reinforces what they've experienced in training. You should give younger students the task of drawing pictures to represent the latest vocabulary. They make a lot of colourful notes that look like artwork. They have such a vivid imagination that their sketches can be used to build a virtual exhibition.


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