4 Steps to Grow Your Vocabulary in Russian
Remembering brand-new words is a challenge for a lot of people who are learning foreign languages. It is challenging, especially at the start, when your vocabulary is inadequate and restricted to simple conversations and kindergarten books.
Why does this occur? This is because we probably fail to do whatever it takes to remember brand-new words that we learn.
Perhaps, you may have come across a brand-new word and attempted to discover its translation and then stop working with it. Then, later on, you see the very same word again but cannot even remember its translated meaning and have to browse through the dictionary or online translator once more. Without a systematic process to grow your vocabulary, this will take up a lot of your time.
So, to save your time, I want to show you a simple four-step approach that will help you grow your vocabulary in Russian.
Select a book that matches the level of your language proficiency, or you can consult your teacher to recommended books for your language proficiency level. Those books should not be too difficult to read, but it must still provoke your interest and offer brand-new words for you to learn. Read a little bit of those books every day, probably a chapter or so. Fifteen to twenty minutes of reading is sufficient. Of course, if you desire to read more out of interest, then you are free to do that.
Underline brand-new words when you come across any new words while reading. Search for their meaning in the dictionary and start constructing several simple sentences with the brand-new vocabulary in Russian, together with their translation in the margins of your notebook. Yes, I’m talking about writing those sentences down on the pages of your notebook while reading.
By doing so, you are awakening your mechanical memory, which automatically helps you remember those new words easily as you form sentences with it. You can find these notebooks in stationery stores and simply divide your notepad’s pages in half with a line and tape-record your vocabulary in Russian using this approach. Cover the new words’ meaning with a piece of paper (or post-it slips) and attempt to remember the translation of each brand-new word. Move the piece of paper down word by word and test yourself.
Once you have learned several new words, try forming sentences until you can write a short story or description about your life. Then, show your story to your instructor to have him/her evaluate your work and correct your mistakes afterward. This does not always help you to remember brand-new words, but at least it helps you to use those words properly and prevent future mistakes.
Try to use as many brand-new words as you can throughout your future conversations (where necessary). If you only write them down and not apply it in real life, how do you expect to remember those brand-new words you have learned? When you start using those words in your conversations with Russian speakers, you get involved in the actual activity of truly acquiring the language itself through practice and having loads of feedback along the way. That’s how you learn and grow.
It would be great to do the first three steps, but if you do the fourth step consistently for about a few months and beyond, you are well on your way to growing your vocabulary, picking up brand-new Russian words you’ve been studying throughout the weeks of hard work.
Thank you for reading this short article up till now. I want to encourage you to try out this approach to grow your vocabulary in Russian.
If you are a beginner in the Russian language, check out my other article on How to Learn the Russian Alphabet within 24 Hours.