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  • Hi, I'm Vanessa from SpeakEnglishWithVanessa.com.

  • Do you have trouble remembering all the wonderful vocabulary words that you're learning?

  • You're not alone.

  • Let's talk about it.

  • If you've been learning English for longer than, say, five minutes, you probably have

  • run across some new words.

  • In fact, the phrasal verb I just used, "run across," might be new for you.

  • How can you remember it?

  • How can you retain that information, so that when you're having a conversation, you can

  • actually use it?

  • Well, I have some good news.

  • Today we're gonna talk about 10 different things that you can do to remember, retain

  • and use the vocabulary words that you're learning.

  • Before we talk about these 10 tips for remembering vocabulary words, we need to talk about the

  • three steps that happen every time that you run across a new word.

  • They are: Recognizing, understanding, and using.

  • The first one, recognizing, means that when you see a new word or you hear a new word,

  • you think, "Oh, I think I've heard that before.

  • I've heard the word 'run across' before."

  • The word that I just used.

  • "I've heard that before, but I don't really remember what it means exactly."

  • This is recognizing it.

  • You've seen it before, but you don't remember exactly what it means.

  • Then, the second step is understanding.

  • Maybe after this video, you will understand what the word "run across" means, but you

  • won't be able to use it yourself.

  • This means that when you read it in a book or you watch a TV show and you hear them say

  • "run across," you'll think, "Oh yeah, I heard Vanessa use this.

  • I know what it means."

  • But when you're having a conversation with an English speaker, it just leaves your mind

  • and you forget about this word completely, because you're not at the third and final

  • step, which is using it yourself.

  • I wanna let you know that there is a big gap between understanding a word and using it

  • yourself.

  • You need to understand and run across this word a lot.

  • You need to run across 20, 30, 40 times.

  • You need to read it in books.

  • You need to hear it on TV shows.

  • You need to hear me say it.

  • You need to run across a word, the word you're trying to remember, a lot of times for you

  • to be able to spontaneously use it in a conversation.

  • And that's the final step, is using it.

  • So I wanna let you know that when you learn a new word, you're not gonna use it directly.

  • You're not gonna be able to just blurt it out and say it immediately.

  • Instead, you're gonna have to go through each of those steps.

  • Recognizing it: "Oh yeah, I know this word, but I don't really remember what it means."

  • Then understanding it, and then actually using it yourself.

  • So be patient with yourself when you learn a new word.

  • Realize that you're going through those three steps, and that eventually you will get to

  • using it, but you need to have a lot of English input.

  • You need to really run across those new words so many times that you can actually make it

  • to the "using it" step.

  • All right, let's get on with the 10 tips to help you remember and eventually use new vocabulary

  • expressions.

  • My first tip is to look it up on YouTube.

  • What you're looking for here is, you're trying to find some insight, some new perspective,

  • maybe a story that will stick with you.

  • Let's say that you hear the expression "odd job," and you think, "Well, I know what 'odd'

  • is, kind of weird and strange.

  • And I know what a job is.

  • Does this mean a weird or strange job?

  • I don't know.

  • I wanna use it correctly."

  • So you search on YouTube, "odd job."

  • You're hoping to hear this word repeated a lot so that you can make it from recognizing

  • to understanding to using, and you come across or you run across the video that Dan and I

  • made about vocabulary, including the word "odd job."

  • You listen to that a couple times.

  • You hear Dan's stories about his odd jobs.

  • You hear my stories about the odd jobs that I had, and you realize, "Oh, it's not actually

  • a weird job.

  • It's just a kind of side job.

  • Babysitting, walking dogs, washing windows.

  • Some kind of side job.

  • Now I understand it."

  • So you need to repeat it a lot in order to actually use it, but looking it up on YouTube

  • is a great first tip.

  • You're gonna hear it correctly.

  • You'll hear a native speaker pronounce it, and maybe you'll hear a little story that

  • will help it to stick in your mind.

  • My second tip is for people who learn well visually.

  • For me, when I hear a new word in another language, it's really difficult for me to

  • remember it only by listening.

  • I really like to see the words, that I can visualize it, and it just helps it to stick

  • in my mind better.

  • So I recommend when you hear a new word, when you see a new word, write it down in a notebook.

  • But don't write only the word.

  • Write at least one phrase or better yet, write a full sentence and maybe write some of your

  • own sentences.

  • Let's say that you wanna use the word that I just used, "at least."

  • Well, you could look it up on YouTube and find my lesson about it, or you could write

  • your own sentences about it.

  • This is gonna help you to create language, use it yourself, but also it's reinforcing

  • visually what the word looks like, to help you remember it.

  • Connected to number two is number three, which is to write a comment using the new expression

  • that you just learned.

  • You're here on YouTube, so I imagine that you watch other lessons about vocabulary and

  • grammar on YouTube.

  • Use it immediately.

  • Write a comment using that expression.

  • You're using the word.

  • You're seeing it visually.

  • You're interacting with other people, so it's more of a real life situation than just using

  • a notebook.

  • You're hoping that other people will actually be able to understand your sentence, and maybe

  • if you're lucky, you'll even get some feedback about it.

  • Tip number four will help you with some muscle memory.

  • It is to read out loud the sentence that you wrote in your notebook, the sentence that

  • you wrote in the YouTube comments, or even a sentence that someone else wrote.

  • This is helping you to use your own muscles, and also helping you to get over the fear

  • of hearing your own voice using English.

  • I know for me, when I first started speaking some Korean when I lived in Korea, it was

  • so weird to hear my voice using these words that I had just learned, so I needed to get

  • over it.

  • I needed to just do it and use these words out loud.

  • So even though you might not be spontaneously creating sentences, you're just reading them,

  • it's gonna be repetition and it's gonna help you to slowly step by step be able to use

  • it spontaneously.

  • Tip number five uses muscle memory and is also great for visual and kinesthetic learners.

  • It is to draw a picture of a new expression when you learn it.

  • So let's imagine that you hear the word "rain check."

  • "Can we take a rain check?"

  • And you think, "Rain check?

  • I know what rain is.

  • I know what a check is.

  • What's a rain check?"

  • So you look it up on YouTube.

  • You write a comment about it.

  • You read it out loud, and then you think, "Well, I wanna take it to the next level."

  • So you open your notebook again and you draw a picture of a rain check, so that you can

  • really ingrain this in your memory.

  • If you're curious, a "rain check" means you're just gonna delay something because something

  • came up.

  • Something happened and you have to delay your event, so you might say, "Hey, we need to

  • take a rain check.

  • We need to do it tomorrow instead of today."

  • So now in your notebook, you can draw a picture of a rain check.

  • You could either draw a literal picture of a rain check: a check with a rain on it, or

  • you can draw a picture depicting this.

  • This is great if you enjoy drawing, of course, and if you enjoy learning visually and also

  • by using your body, moving your body and drawing, it's gonna help ingrain these words in your

  • mind.

  • Tips number six and seven go together.

  • The first one, number six, is to learn maximum five new expressions per week.

  • This might not seem like too many expressions, but after a couple weeks, it's gonna build

  • and build and build, and if you try to learn 20, 30, 40 expressions per week, it's just

  • gonna feel overwhelming and your brain's actually not gonna be able to remember them enough

  • to use them.

  • So tip number seven is to go back and review past expressions using apps like Anki.

  • Anki is an excellent app and you can write kind of like, digital flash cards.

  • You can write the expressions.

  • I recommend writing full phrases or sentences using those expressions, and it will use a

  • spaced repetition system, SRS, so that over the next couple days, it will show you those

  • words again and you can try to guess correctly what they mean, the sentences that they fit

  • in, but it will also help you to review past words.

  • So you're gonna see those past words that you learned at certain intervals: every three

  • days, every five days, every week.

  • This will help you to remember it because repetition is key.

  • My number eight tip to help you remember new vocabulary words is something that's great

  • to do while you're driving to work or while you're sitting on the train.

  • You're just kind of having this empty free time.

  • It is to name things around you.