People who are engaged in studying English language and in particular English vocabulary, have always found genuine self-expression the ability with which they usually struggle. It is more often than not due to the tendency many students have to study just enough to get by in one’s day to day activities. However, it is not a shortcoming restricted to international students. Even students of English as a first language have been known to develop a restricted vocabulary due to this mistake. To truly sound like a native speaker, especially one who makes maximum use of the intricacies of the English language, you should always focus on expanding vocabulary. It will enhance one’s ability to carry out a meaningful conversation, whilst being able to articulate grammatically correct sentences. Paying careful attention to building vocabulary may seem to be a difficult task at first, but it is surprising how fast one can train the brain to absorb and comprehend new words and phrases.
The first step to building and reinforcing one’s English vocabulary is to be a voracious reader. The simple act of reading exposes students to new words and phrases almost every time. Whilst reading, it is important to employ the proper tools to develop one’s vocabulary successfully. First make a habit of highlighting new and unusual words or phrases, and then refer a dictionary to find out the meaning of these words. To further build vocabulary one must also look these words up in a Thesaurus as this will show other words that have the same or opposite meanings.
Activities such as word games like scrabble, crossword puzzles and word jumbles are readily available means of reinforcing and building vocabulary. Word games often encourage the use of dictionaries to check words and definitions as part of the game play. Crossword puzzles and Word jumbles often found in newspapers are available in multiple degrees of difficulty. The making a habit of doing at least one of these tasks a day will always help students build their vocabulary, not to mention have a very positive impact on their general cognition.
Another very accessible method of developing one’s English vocabulary is the internet. Home to many online resources that teach Students new words and phrases, the internet is an almost never ending source of learning if applied correctly. One of the most exemplary resources available online is English Club TV. Also known as ECTV, the site takes a unique approach to teaching English. It features a comprehensive list of programmes, all in the format of episodic TV shows that teach students the various aspects of English. Programmes such as “ECTV Simple News” and “English 911” are specially designed by a team of native experts to address vocabulary expansion.