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Old 16th March 2010, 08:26 PM   #1
DaveKotschessa
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Default 1000 words...

I'm thinking of doing something maybe a little on the crazy side.

So I have this book: 1001 Most Useful Spanish Words

I even went so far once as to enter all the words in a flashcard program called mnemosyne, which I practiced with for awhile. Other than that I haven't really applied myself to it much. At one point I thought "if I learn just 3 words a day I'll have them in a year." But that lasted exactly one day. I just haven't gotten very inspired about it.

So I thought - hey... What if I just went for it - and spent an entire month and just learned the whole thing. That's about 30 words a day. I think at this point I could really benefit from a serious infusion of vocabulary.

Truth is, I probably know a large percentage of the words already. It includes days of the week, months, numbers, etc. And I started working on it awhile ago - so maybe I'm really looking at about 20 words a day. However, I am likely to miss some days, realistically. I'd like to start next month. Wondering what people think or if anybody has tried something like this.

-DaveK
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Old 17th March 2010, 09:48 AM   #2
ddmars
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I think that you are already putting it off until next month!! I don't think that memorising 100 words is the best approach to learning a new language. You need to learn how to use the words and construct a sentence rather than just rhyming off 1000 of them! Choose a subject that you are interested in ie. sport, music, cooking etc. Then immerse yourself in spanish language books and articles related to that subject. Lots of DVDs and video games have spanish language options too. You need to listen to podcasts and the spoken word, this is a must. Ben and Maria have a mountain of free resources. You'll see other posts on this forum with regard to free resources on other sites. I've also posted loads of links to websites with free spanish stuff that I've found.

Rant over :-)

Cheers

Darren
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Old 17th March 2010, 01:17 PM   #3
DaveKotschessa
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Originally Posted by ddmars View Post
I think that you are already putting it off until next month!! I don't think that memorising 100 words is the best approach to learning a new language. You need to learn how to use the words and construct a sentence rather than just rhyming off 1000 of them! Choose a subject that you are interested in ie. sport, music, cooking etc. Then immerse yourself in spanish language books and articles related to that subject. Lots of DVDs and video games have spanish language options too. You need to listen to podcasts and the spoken word, this is a must. Ben and Maria have a mountain of free resources. You'll see other posts on this forum with regard to free resources on other sites. I've also posted loads of links to websites with free spanish stuff that I've found.

Rant over :-)

Cheers

Darren
[whines] But Darren... I already DO that!

Yesterday I listened to three podcasts (inspired beginners 12, took notes and did the homework, spanishpod, news in slow spanish) listened to a Berlitz course I just got a deal on (kind of a review becuase it's way at the beginning, and I finished my spanish reader! (Big accomplishment) I also did some exercises in my book on spanish past tenses. That's a bit more than an average day for me. Then sundays of course is Spanish Day with mi novia.

Right now I pick up words a little at a time, day by day. Sometimes through context... And as I'm listening to all this stuff I feel that the thing I could use right now is a "vocabulary infusion." That's where the idea came from.

My goal for this month is to finish inspired beginners and start the intermediate next month.
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Old 18th March 2010, 09:25 PM   #4
Stephen
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Sounds like you're putting in a lot of effort Dave. Perhaps too much. Don't kill your interest by making it too much like hard work. Learning a language takes forever. I'd slow down and resign yourself to it all taking years.
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Old 18th March 2010, 10:50 PM   #5
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Far be it for me to tell anyone how to learn a language but it sounds like you're really keen and wanting to immerse yourself in Spanish. So why not? The only note of caution already expressed is that you might end up killing your interest.

To prevent this I would suggest (and it seems you're already doing this) using a variety of learning methods and areas, such as; general reading, grammar learning, vocabulary (maybe concentrating on topics such as things in the house - room by room, sporting, weather etc), the geography of Spain, history of Spain, podcast listening, general listening (through TVE a la carta, perhaps), conversation classes etc.

I generally followed the above route in the early years when I was as keen as mustard. It prevented me from finding the learning stale as I was doing lots of little bits every day to keep things fresh rather than just one big blob each day which got a bit boring.

Good luck, anyway. It's worth it in the end!
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Old 18th March 2010, 11:26 PM   #6
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Well I go through varying periods of increasing/decreasing activity. Right now I'm on a high "wave" so to speak. I have been at it for a couple of years now! Having a spanish speaking girlfriend helps. We recently started having one spanish-only day every week so that really gets me inspired.

I think I'm going to still go for it. I'm just gearing up for the best approach - whether I want to do flash cards or what.

-M
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Old 18th March 2010, 11:38 PM   #7
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I find that the best idea is my idea. Basically, if it's your idea, you CAN do it. Go for it! Let us know how it turns out. I personally have a real hard time remembering a word if I only hear it one day. I have to hear it several times before it's gets in my brain for good.
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Old 14th June 2010, 03:19 PM   #8
Cide Hamete Benengeli VII
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Default 1001: A great vocabulary builder

This is a very useful book for building your vocabulary, especially for beginning and intermediate learners. And one of the great things is that for each of the main entries, there's a sentence showing the word used in context.

Some of the thematic sections would also be of interest to advanced learners. I've got a copy myself.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveKotschessa View Post
I'm thinking of doing something maybe a little on the crazy side.

So I have this book: 1001 Most Useful Spanish Words

I even went so far once as to enter all the words in a flashcard program called mnemosyne, which I practiced with for awhile. Other than that I haven't really applied myself to it much. At one point I thought "if I learn just 3 words a day I'll have them in a year." But that lasted exactly one day. I just haven't gotten very inspired about it.

So I thought - hey... What if I just went for it - and spent an entire month and just learned the whole thing. That's about 30 words a day. I think at this point I could really benefit from a serious infusion of vocabulary.

Truth is, I probably know a large percentage of the words already. It includes days of the week, months, numbers, etc. And I started working on it awhile ago - so maybe I'm really looking at about 20 words a day. However, I am likely to miss some days, realistically. I'd like to start next month. Wondering what people think or if anybody has tried something like this.

-DaveK
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Old 15th June 2010, 02:07 AM   #9
Uriel
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All I can say is that after 3 years of high school Spanish, I knew hundreds and hundreds of Spanish words. I could drive all over town and translate every street sign I passed. But I couldn't string them together into a sentence to save my life. And evern now that I am seriously working on learning it again, I find myself reading Mexican news articles and looking up the same friggin' word for the fifth time, because it won't stick in my head. (Otorgar, you know who you are!) But have someone actually use it in a conversation, or act out the meaning for me, and I never forget it. (That's how I learned dejar.) So there's something to be said for esoteric study, but a lot more to be said for actually using stuff in context. Your brain learns better that way.
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Old 24th June 2010, 03:26 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stephen View Post
Sounds like you're putting in a lot of effort Dave. Perhaps too much. Don't kill your interest by making it too much like hard work. Learning a language takes forever. I'd slow down and resign yourself to it all taking years.
I agree, don't strain yourself too much. Tendency is you'll loose all that zeal and you'll eventually get bored, which is bad for language learning. Go slow a bit, you'll eventually reach your goal.
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Old 25th June 2010, 01:50 PM   #11
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Default Thoughts from an Intermediate Speaker

I'm still at the intermediate level, so my advice is probably not as valuable as that of those who have already learned to speak fluently, but I find that I learn the most when I (A) immerse myself in the language, and (B) expose myself to several different learning methods at one time.

I agree that flashcards and word memorization alone are not sufficient, but if you combine that approach with reading spanish newspapers outloud & translating words you don't understand (www.lingro.com is great for this), listening to Ben & Marina's podcasts, etc., you will find that the words you have "memorized" via flashcards will tend to pop up in conversation or in print. Seeing or hearing them in context (separately from your initial memorization exercises) provides the reinforcement you need in order for the words to stick... at least that's how it tends to work for me.

Everybody learns differently, but it sounds like you are doing a good job of mixing up your spanish intake, so IMO it's worthwhile to continue with the flashcards.

Good luck!
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Old 26th June 2010, 12:01 AM   #12
Cide Hamete Benengeli VII
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Should be all the motivation you need!

Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveKotschessa View Post
...Having a spanish speaking girlfriend helps...-M
But, just in case…

Atiende, colega, si quieres un español to’ gwapo no te confundas. As with anything, what you put into it is what you get out of it. No todo el monte es orégano y a veces toca hincar los codos.

Last edited by Cide Hamete Benengeli VII; 29th June 2010 at 01:29 PM.
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Old 26th June 2010, 11:40 AM   #13
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I have tried to learn vocabulary that way before (when I was learning English) it did not work for me. You learn vocabulary in daily base when you use a language. I will recommend you to practice Spanish in a regular basis by reading, watching Spanish TV and listening Spanish radio. You can use a dictionary for the new words and they will naturally settle in as you learn them within a context.
You can visit the section media on my web below to find useful Spanish online papers and radios
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Old 4th July 2010, 11:18 PM   #14
daveyboy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveKotschessa View Post
[whines] But Darren... I already DO that!

Yesterday I listened to three podcasts (inspired beginners 12, took notes and did the homework, spanishpod, news in slow spanish) listened to a Berlitz course I just got a deal on (kind of a review becuase it's way at the beginning, and I finished my spanish reader! (Big accomplishment) I also did some exercises in my book on spanish past tenses. That's a bit more than an average day for me. Then sundays of course is Spanish Day with mi novia.

Right now I pick up words a little at a time, day by day. Sometimes through context... And as I'm listening to all this stuff I feel that the thing I could use right now is a "vocabulary infusion." That's where the idea came from.

My goal for this month is to finish inspired beginners and start the intermediate next month.

Have you tried the Assimil Spanish with ease book with audio..?

I am using this book now along with other methods, Flash cards, listening while reading and listening and listening..lol.. This Assimil book is very good as long as you follow the instructions on how to use it.
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