English is among the most widely-spoken languages in the world, and is seen by many as the lingua franca of the present-day global community. As a language, it is deceptively tricky to learn, without the structure and rules that can make languages like French and German a little more transparent. It is, however, a language with which you’ll never run short of opportunities to practice – there are so many sources out there where you can hear it, read it and in time speak it and write it. In order to learn English more effectively, a broad vocabulary is an essential gift, as it will help you avoid confusion, understand and be understood. Below are a few potential tricks to help you improve English vocabulary.
Words are the building blocks of any language. Being able to communicate clearly in both verbal and written communication is essential. When you learn a new language, it is vital that you continually add to your vocabulary. Increasing one’s vocabulary takes time, repetition, and effort.
You might be looking to widen your vocabulary, Or perhaps you are looking to increase the rate at which you are learning. Either way here is some techniques to help you build your English vocabulary.
Watch TV or listen to the radio in English
One of the most effective ways of expanding your vocabulary is to hear the language being spoken by a native. There is no better example of a native speaker than someone who has been hired to speak on TV or radio, and their use of language will usually be reflective of the broad sweep of the language. With apps available to allow you to listen to worldwide radio, and a lot of content on YouTube and other platforms, this is a great way to begin.
For anyone wondering how to improve English vocabulary, the gift of newspapers is invaluable. It is in a newspaper that you will see words most effectively used in context. What’s more, if you know about a news story in another language, reading how it is related in English can provide you with the clues you need to understand unfamiliar words.
Use a dictionary/translation site
There aren’t many words in any language that only have one translation. If you know the word in your native language, and maybe one word for it in English, you can end up overusing the word or even using it incorrectly. When you search a translation in the dictionary or using Google Translate, it will offer you a range of synonyms – and you will get to understand which one is the best to use for a given situation.
Play word games
There are plenty of game apps online which offer you the chance to test your vocabulary, often against other players from around the world (including English-speaking countries). Even if your vocabulary isn’t large to begin with, playing against stronger speakers is precisely how to build up vocabulary in English. Every time you meet an unfamiliar word, check it in the dictionary – and then try to use it yourself.
In many ways, vocabulary is like a muscle – it will get stronger the more you use it. Speaking to native – or non-native – speakers of English will guarantee you the chance to learn new words. Anyone who has ever wondered how to develop English vocabulary will know that the most important thing is putting your vocabulary to use and hearing what people say in return. This is how language works, and before long you’ll be finding ways to work those new words into your everyday use of the language.