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15 Creative Tips and Resources to Efficiently Memorize Vocab

15 Creative Tips and Resources to Efficiently Memorize Vocab

There are many different ways to learning vocabulary, whether it be for a test in science, business or politics, learning the vocab of a new language or even the small details within your speech that you want to memorize. The way that you memorize vocab is very important – it needs to be powerful, smart and efficient in order for you to progress with speed. Luckily, there are some helpful tools and resources out there to help you unlock your potential in memorizing key vocab.

Let’s start:

Creating associations is a very clever tactic to developing memory strength for specific information that you are learning – in this case, vocabulary.

1. Mnemonics

These are very simple ways to remember a large sentence of words. Below is an example. This has helped millions learn the solar system, the north, east, south and west directions, and the colors in the rainbow, among other important things.

tclef_mnemonic
    2. Environment

    This is an opportunity to expand your association to physical objects and real life things. Associating your vocab or information with a physical object has been very useful in helping to learn and relate to the original piece of information. People have been doing it with their hands, equipment and resources around them for years.

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    3. Weird associations

    Another useful method is using weird associations to already existing objects or names of certain things. An example of this is when one of my friends in my class remembered “mandare”, which is “to send” in Italian, by associating it to her other friend’s name Mandy, who would mail her presents at Christmas. These kind of associations won’t let you forget the information of the word and its meanings.

    Tool for Associations:

    4. FlashSticks – For Language Learning

    FlashSticks are foreign language Post-it Notes, each printed with a unique, commonly used word, translation, icon and phonetic.They are designed to help you memorise vocabulary by using association. The main benefit to using FlashSticks is the opportunity to stick them in the areas that help you remember more easily. For example, if someone wanted to learn Spanish and they had a pack of FlashSticks, they would place each note over the object of relevance.

    This helps the brain create association and build on its memory strength. You can also strengthen this by taking out your smartphone and scanning the note, and from here you can get a language coach to show you the correct pronunciation.

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      The next step:

      Creating an environment – This is developing things around you to learn a specific thing.

      5. Different Sources

      You need to explore different sources of taking in new vocabulary that tests what kind of person you are, whether you are more visual, audio or physical.

      6. Learning from friends

      Your friends can be an environment, and they can be of huge use when it comes to engaging with another one on one about something that they know and you are trying to learn. Whether it s a language, computer problem or training, learning the right vocab from another will help you build association and learn more effectively.

      7. Using Technologies

      Using new technology, wearable technology, and podcasts are resources that you need to be taking advantage of.

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      8. StudyBlue

      Revise and memorize anything online. This is targeted towards students and other learners, as StudyBlue is an online flashcards website that allows you to learn online and on the go. This website is amazing for collaborating with others on notes and improving student’s revision. Perfect for memorizing vocab.

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        9. Duolgingo – Android Wear application

        This is, again, targeted toward language learners, but on the go you need to have something at your fingertips. StudyBlue has an app, but Duolingo has an Android wear application that allows you to learn vocab on languages on the go. This is based off of a card app that allows you to choose whether you’ve gotten something correct or incorrect. You get 10 new words a day to learn and it is available in multiple languages,

        Duolingo-Android-Wear-640

          Reviewing your memory – Using a review system is useful in build up a much stronger ability to memorize vocab. For this process I take my time to discover some new technologies out there to meet the needs of my vocabulary

          10. Evernote & Get Reflect – For reviewing on your notes

          If you are using Evernote for the collection of notes, images and documents throughout your day, then you’ll love this application on the web. Get Reflect is designed to help you recover notes, review notes, and remains perfect for learning vocabulary from notes – just use a tag in your Evernote and you’ll master this vocab revision opportunity.

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            11. Drink lots

            When learning new things, it is important that your brain knows what you are doing and keeps working to its top capacity. Drink lots of water throughout your day for that vocab to be retained.

            12. SoundCloud

            From experience, some of the best ways to memorize vocab is audio and SoundCloud has a massive library of vocabulary-based content, especially in the language area. This is such a great source to check out!

            13. Mono-tasking

            Focus on one task, don’t get distracted. When learning something like vocab, you need all of your attention. Find a quiet place and focus on just one thing.

            14. Chewing gum

            Apparently if you are chewing gum while studying, then gum of the same flavor will help you make the association when reviewing the material later. Very powerful – grab some gum and try it out over time.

            15. Mind-mapping

            Get a big piece of A3, and hit into spreading your vocab across the page. This will help you discover and learn the words in a more visual way.

            Featured photo credit: Flashsticks via flashsticks.com

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            Last Updated on July 10, 2020

            The Power of Ritual: Conquer Procrastination, Time Wasters and Laziness

            The Power of Ritual: Conquer Procrastination, Time Wasters and Laziness

            Life is wasted in the in-between times. The time between when your alarm first rings and when you finally decide to get out of bed. The time between when you sit at your desk and when productive work begins. The time between making a decision and doing something about it.

            Slowly, your day is whittled away from all the unused in-between moments. Eventually, time wasters, laziness, and procrastination get the better of you.

            The solution to reclaim these lost middle moments is by creating rituals. Every culture on earth uses rituals to transfer information and encode behaviors that are deemed important. Personal rituals can help you build a better pattern for handling everything from how you wake up to how you work.

            Unfortunately, when most people see rituals, they see pointless superstitions. Indeed, many rituals are based on a primitive understanding of the world. But by building personal rituals, you get to encode the behaviors you feel are important and cut out the wasted middle moments.

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            Program Your Own Algorithms

            Another way of viewing rituals is by seeing them as computer algorithms. An algorithm is a set of instructions that is repeated to get a result.

            Some algorithms are highly efficient, sorting or searching millions of pieces of data in a few seconds. Other algorithms are bulky and awkward, taking hours to do the same task.

            By forming rituals, you are building algorithms for your behavior. Take the delayed and painful pattern of waking up, debating whether to sleep in for another two minutes, hitting the snooze button, repeat until almost late for work. This could be reprogrammed to get out of bed immediately, without debating your decision.

            How to Form a Ritual

            I’ve set up personal rituals for myself for handling e-mail, waking up each morning, writing articles, and reading books. Far from making me inflexible, these rituals give me a useful default pattern that works best 99% of the time. Whenever my current ritual won’t work, I’m always free to stop using it.

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            Forming a ritual isn’t too difficult, and the same principles for changing habits apply:

            1. Write out your sequence of behavior. I suggest starting with a simple ritual of only 3-4 steps maximum. Wait until you’ve established a ritual before you try to add new steps.
            2. Commit to following your ritual for thirty days. This step will take the idea and condition it into your nervous system as a habit.
            3. Define a clear trigger. When does your ritual start? A ritual to wake up is easy—the sound of your alarm clock will work. As for what triggers you to go to the gym, read a book or answer e-mail—you’ll have to decide.
            4. Tweak the Pattern. Your algorithm probably won’t be perfectly efficient the first time. Making a few tweaks after the first 30-day trial can make your ritual more useful.

            Ways to Use a Ritual

            Based on the above ideas, here are some ways you could implement your own rituals:

            1. Waking Up

            Set up a morning ritual for when you wake up and the next few things you do immediately afterward. To combat the grogginess after immediately waking up, my solution is to do a few pushups right after getting out of bed. After that, I sneak in ninety minutes of reading before getting ready for morning classes.

            2. Web Usage

            How often do you answer e-mail, look at Google Reader, or check Facebook each day? I found by taking all my daily internet needs and compressing them into one, highly-efficient ritual, I was able to cut off 75% of my web time without losing any communication.

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            3. Reading

            How much time do you get to read books? If your library isn’t as large as you’d like, you might want to consider the rituals you use for reading. Programming a few steps to trigger yourself to read instead of watching television or during a break in your day can chew through dozens of books each year.

            4. Friendliness

            Rituals can also help with communication. Set up a ritual of starting a conversation when you have opportunities to meet people.

            5. Working

            One of the hardest barriers when overcoming procrastination is building up a concentrated flow. Building those steps into a ritual can allow you to quickly start working or continue working after an interruption.

            6. Going to the gym

            If exercising is a struggle, encoding a ritual can remove a lot of the difficulty. Set up a quick ritual for going to exercise right after work or when you wake up.

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            7. Exercise

            Even within your workouts, you can have rituals. Spacing the time between runs or reps with a certain number of breaths can remove the guesswork. Forming a ritual of doing certain exercises in a particular order can save time.

            8. Sleeping

            Form a calming ritual in the last 30-60 minutes of your day before you go to bed. This will help slow yourself down and make falling asleep much easier. Especially if you plan to get up full of energy in the morning, it will help if you remove insomnia.

            8. Weekly Reviews

            The weekly review is a big part of the GTD system. By making a simple ritual checklist for my weekly review, I can get the most out of this exercise in less time. Originally, I did holistic reviews where I wrote my thoughts on the week and progress as a whole. Now, I narrow my focus toward specific plans, ideas, and measurements.

            Final Thoughts

            We all want to be productive. But time wasters, procrastination, and laziness sometimes get the better of us. If you’re facing such difficulties, don’t be afraid to make use of these rituals to help you conquer them.

            More Tips to Conquer Time Wasters and Procrastination

             

            Featured photo credit: RODOLFO BARRETO via unsplash.com

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