How Can I Learn Vocabulary Fast And Effectively

Cover Image for How Can I Learn Vocabulary Fast And Effectively
Lorea Lastiri
Lorea Lastiri

Here are some ways that will help you learn vocabulary in your target language more effectively: 

  • Write down all the words/phrases that you want to remember.

  • Learn words with similar meanings but different contexts.

  • Play with the words.

  • Keep searching for new words.

  • Use mnemonics.

  • Connect with the words to create clear pictures.

  • Read as much as possible.

  • Talk to yourself in your target language.

  • Learn words in clusters.

  • Set realistic goals.

  • Learn words with opposite meanings.

  • Use pictures when studying new words.

  • Learn in small portions.

  • Communicate in your target language.

  • Take vocabulary tests

If you are looking for ways to learn vocabulary quickly and efficiently, this blog post is for you. 

We will be explaining in detail these listed methods that have been proven to work over the years. 

When you learn a new word, it is important to know the definition of that word and how to use it in different contexts. If you want to keep up with any language as best as possible, then understanding idioms and colloquialisms is also essential. 

There are many more tips included in this article about how to get better at learning vocabulary quickly! These techniques will make learning new words much more manageable.

Let’s get started!

1. Write down all the words/phrases that you want to remember

The first step to learning vocabulary fast is to write down all the words and phrases that you want to remember. Include many different vocabulary types (nouns, verbs, adjectives) and parts of speech (adverbs, nouns). Keep track of them in a small notepad or notebook with a list format (one word per line). 

This will help your brain to attach meaning and understanding to each word.

When you are ready, take the time to review your list of new words. 

Next, try relating the words in different ways. Think about what synonyms or antonyms they might have.  

You can also create sentences using the words to remember them even better.

The more you write new words and phrases, the easier it will be for your brain to remember what they mean and how they work in a language context. This includes reading comprehension, listening skills, and speaking abilities.

2. Learn words with similar meanings but different contexts

If you want to make learning vocabulary easier, then learn related words with similar meanings but different contexts. It will help your brain to remember the words easily and efficiently and understand the different contexts to use them.  

For example, the Spanish word "dormir" means sleep. However, there are many other variations of this same word, such as “dormitorio” (bedroom), “despertador” (alarm clock), and “dormilón” (late sleeper).

Such related words are easier to remember, and ultimately, faster to learn.

3. Play and have fun with the words

Play and having fun with the words through a game like Boggle or Scrabble or even meditation. Playing with the words gives your brain a more leisurely time processing all the different meanings connected to each word. It helps you retain the new vocabulary.

Another way to play and have fun with your words is through word searches. You can do this by cutting out each letter of a word or just using the index page of a book in your target language. 

If you search for words in order, then it will help you remember them better! 

4. Keep searching for new words

Make a habit of finding new words to ensure that you are constantly improving your vocabulary. Seeing different words will help your brain stay attuned to word patterns. It makes it easier to understand words when they appear again.

It is important to keep looking for new words to stay on top of your language skills. 

5. Use mnemonics to remember words

It's a good idea to use mnemonics when you are trying to learn vocabulary.

A mnemonic is an association in your mind that will help remind you of what the word means, how it is used and where you can find it. These associations could include objects, actions, or anything else that links to the word's meaning.

The following are some practical examples of mnemonics: 

Word: Incapacitated

Meaning: Unable to act or respond

Mnemonic: No Capacity to Act

Word: Juxtapose

Meaning: To place two things side by side, especially for comparison

Mnemonic: Just Pose (Side by Side)

Word: Inevitable

Meaning: Impossible to avoid or to prevent

Mnemonic: In Every Table

Mnemonics can help you remember vocabulary words more effectively and help them make sense in a language context. That way, you can remember them better for the future.

6. Connect with the words to create clear pictures

If you want to remember the word 'parallel,' you can connect with rail tracks. This will create a picture in your mind that will help you remember the meaning of this word, which is 'to be parallel to something.'

When you are learning vocabulary, find similarities that the words have with other words or objects. You can do this by thinking about the synonyms or antonyms the word might have, and if they have the same root word as another. It will help your brain remember the words better.

Another example would be if you want to learn about what a 'tour' means in French, then try and find words such as "visited" (to visit) or "voyager" (travel). These two words have a linguistic relation with 'tour,’ which makes them easier to remember.

7. Read as much as possible

Look for books or other material with interesting content that you can enjoy. Reading books makes it easier for your brain to learn new words because of their context within the sentence or passage. The more words you have in a language, the easier it becomes for your brain to process the language. 

When faced with an unknown word, your brain will access other words that it has seen before to help you understand the meaning.

Another benefit of reading is that it makes your brain more attuned to word patterns, which can be easier to recognize when they appear again.

8. Talk to yourself in your target language

Talking aloud will help your brain process new words more easily because the word’s pronunciation will happen in real-time. 

Talking to yourself helps in two ways: 

  • One, it will help you stay aware of the mistakes that you make when speaking a language.

  • Secondly, it will reinforce your new vocabulary making it easier for you to remember them later on.

9. Learn words in clusters

Clustering basically means learning new words around one idea or theme. These ideas or themes can be more focused, such as “Coffee” (to roast, espresso, steam, filter), or quite large, such as “The Universe” (planets, solar systems, stars, suns). 

When you remember a word in a cluster, you will have a picture in your mind, and when using it, you will remember other words in the collection. 

For example, if you are learning the word "sleep" and its synonyms, then your brain will be able to access memories of words such as "rest,” "relaxation,” or "bed.” 

It becomes easier for your mind to remember the new vocabulary because the other related words make sense, helping you learn faster.

When you learn new words in clusters, your brain can access memories of related words, which helps you understand what they mean and how you should use them.

10. Set realistic goals for yourself

Every individual learns at their own pace. There is no competition. You have to work according to your caliber. Set realistic targets so that you can make progress quickly and easily.

For example, if you are learning Spanish, set goals such as:

  • Today I will learn 10 vegetable names in Spanish.

  • Watch a 1 hour documentary in Spanish and take notes

  • Listen to a Spanish podcast  

Don't try and learn everything at once which might lead to confusion. Instead, set realistic goals for yourself 

11. Learn words with opposite meanings

Learning words with opposite meanings helps you differentiate between the two words so that you don’t get confused in the future.

For instance, if you are learning the word "easy" and want to learn its antonym, difficult, then use these words in a sentence that has the same meaning.

For example, "You are a person who is easy to approach but difficult to deal with."

Doing so will help your brain remember these words better as they relate.

12. Use pictures when studying new words

If you want to know what "ice cream" is, look at pictures of people eating ice cream. It will help you remember the meaning of "ice cream" and also how it is used in a sentence. 

Pictures are a great way to help you learn vocabulary better because they provide context for the word.

13. Learn in small portions

When you learn in small portions, then your brain can process and understand the information better. That’s because it takes less time to process which means that you make mistakes at a much slower rate.

For example, if you are learning vocabulary related to "car" (i.e., driving or traffic), then try to learn words related to these topics in a short period. 

You can do this by dividing the word into syllables and saying them aloud, writing down what they mean, then repeating it until you know how to say it correctly. 

Do whatever is most comfortable for you, then take a break.

14. Communicate in your target language

Communicating in your target language creates the opportunity to use the new words in the context of talking. You can speak directly with people or by writing!

For example, if someone says that they are eating ice cream then you can say, "Oh I love (ice cream in your target language)." 

Also, communicating more with people will allow your brain to process the words at a much faster rate than if you were to use them in isolation.

When communicating with different individuals, then there are more opportunities for mistakes or misunderstandings which can be corrected by the other person. This helps you learn the word, and improve your understanding of the target language.

15. Take vocabulary tests

Taking your vocabulary tests allows you to determine where you currently stand with the target language. Test your vocabulary by writing down the words in a journal or on another medium that you are comfortable using. Then go through the words the next day and try to remember what they mean!

You can also use Wordeys to test your vocabulary. It allows you to create a vocabulary list, where you can save the words, grammar, and sentences that you want to learn. 

Suppose you are learning Spanish, on Wordeys you will create a meaningful sentence in English then translate it into Spanish. That way, you learn words that are most meaningful to you, instead of learning random words that you will never use. 

You can also install Wordeys chrome extension to learn new words as you browse. You can explore websites in your target language ad Wordeys will show you the meanings, synonyms, and pronunciation. 

16. Keep practicing!

Practice is the key to mastery, and this holds true for language as well. This will help you retain information better. If you are learning a word and want to make sure it sticks, then repeat it out loud or write it down over and over again until you know how to pronounce and spell it correctly. 


Learn vocabulary fast and effectively by reading books, writing down new words, using mnemonics and pictures, and communicating in the target language with others and yourself. 

As you learn the vocabulary, set realistic goals, and study in small portions for an easier time.

Install Wordeys’ chrome extension to translate, define and pronounce new words on any website.

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