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Memorizing Words

Question: Dear John, I'm very glad to know you, even though you don't know me at all. First let me introduce myself to you. I'm a student in a university of He Nan province. I love studying English, but I have so much trouble recently. Remembering words and spoken English are my biggest enemies. Although I try my best, I only gain a little. Maybe my way of studying them is not appopriate. I hope you could give some advice in your spare time. - Wang Enjie

Answer: Hello Enjie. The first thing you have to do if you want to learn English is to pay careful attention to what you study. For example, you wrote "Dear John", even though my name is Joe. Rather than rush to speak and write, students should take more time to look and listen. Then you will see and hear correct English which will become a real part of you. Remember the old saying, "Haste makes waste". By trying to learn English quickly, students end up wasting so much time!

The second thing you should do is stop trying to remember words! Rather than trying to remember words, and then forgetting most of them, you should be trying to learn sentences. If you learn sentences, you will also learn many words along with them! As you remember more and more English sentences, you should move up to stories so you can learn English vocabulary in context.

Besides reading, you need to listen to English as much as possible. This will also help you to improve your vocabulary and also help you to speak English more naturally. If you can get on the Internet, try listening to some stories, for example, at www.teacherjoe.us/jokes.html. Listen carefully several times so that the words, expressions and sentences will really sink into your brain.

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