Page 1 of 2 1 2 Last
Results 1 to 10 of 22

Hybrid View

Previous Post Previous Post   Next Post Next Post
  1. Grablevskij's Avatar
    Member
    Student or Learner
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Russian
      • Home Country:
      • Russian Federation
      • Current Location:
      • Russian Federation

    • Join Date: Aug 2007
    • Posts: 235
    #1

    Flash cards to activate vocabulary

    I'd like to try flash cards. My level seems to be advanced. But I find my active vocabulary very weak.
    That is why I'd like to use cards to convert words from pasive vocabulary to the active one.

    This means mainly memorizing:
    1. Translation.
    2. Ethimology.
    3. Phonetics.
    4. Language constructions (example: abandon something to somebody/something) and pharses They had to abandon their lands to the invading forces.
    5. Idioms.

    Let the goal to be to activate Oxford 3000. Well, it is not that high a level. Maybe 3000 words is for itermediate level or something. So, this is not scary. I mean 3000 words.

    But as far as I remember the principles of using flash cards, only one piece of information shold be on a card.
    Well, combining translation, ethimology and phonetics seems ok for me. At least I don't mind that.

    But it is reasonable to dedicate a whole card to each phrase. Reasonable because otherwise there will be a lot of hints for the phrase. And we don't want any hints. We want to be honest with onselves.

    So, each phrase has a separate card. But we already have 3-4 phrases wor a word, plus a couple of idioms. We'll get at least 15 thousand flash cards.
    Is this reasonable? Do you yourself practice such amount of cards?

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
    Moderator
    English Teacher
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK

    • Join Date: Jul 2009
    • Posts: 52,024
    #2

    Re: Flash cards to activate vocabulary

    Quote Originally Posted by Grablevskij View Post
    I'd like to try flash cards. My level seems to be advanced. (What leads you to say this?) But However, I find think my active vocabulary is very weak.
    That is why I'd like to use cards to convert words from passive vocabulary to the active. one.

    This means mainly memorizing:

    1. Translation.
    2. Ethimology Etymology.
    3. Phonetics.
    4. Language constructions (example: abandon something to somebody/something) and pharses phrases. For example, "They had to abandon their lands to the invading forces."
    5. Idioms.

    Let the My goal is to be to activate learn the Oxford 3000, Well, it is not although I don't think that's that high a level. Maybe 3000 words is for intermediate level or something. So, this for me, 3000 words is not scary. I mean 3000 words.

    But, as far as I remember know, the principles of using flash cards, only one piece of information should be on a each card.
    Well, Combining the translation, ethimology etymology and phonetics seems ok OK for to me. At least, I don't wouldn't mind that.

    But It is reasonable to dedicate a whole card to each phrase - reasonable because otherwise there will be a lot of hints for the phrase. And We don't want any hints. We want to be honest with onselves ourselves. (Where did "we" suddenly come from? You were talking about yourself only until this point.)

    So (no comma here) each phrase has a separate card. But we already have 3-4 phrases for a word, plus a couple of idioms. We'll get at least 15 thousand 15,000 flash cards.
    Is this reasonable? Do you yourself practice with such amount of so many cards?
    Please note my multiple corrections above.

    In all honesty, I'm not sure what you're trying to get at. Are you going to create and manufacture these 15,000 flashcards? Do you feel they should exist but they don't? Who are you referring to in the second half of the piece when you use "we"?
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  3. Grablevskij's Avatar
    Member
    Student or Learner
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Russian
      • Home Country:
      • Russian Federation
      • Current Location:
      • Russian Federation

    • Join Date: Aug 2007
    • Posts: 235
    #3

    Re: Flash cards to activate vocabulary

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    Please note my multiple corrections above.

    In all honesty, I'm not sure what you're trying to get at. Are you going to create and manufacture these 15,000 flashcards? Do you feel they should exist but they don't? Who are you referring to in the second half of the piece when you use "we"?
    I'm not a manufacturer.
    My vocabulary just needs activation.

  4. emsr2d2's Avatar
    Moderator
    English Teacher
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK

    • Join Date: Jul 2009
    • Posts: 52,024
    #4

    Re: Flash cards to activate vocabulary

    So where are these 15,000 flashcards that contain the information you think should appear on them?
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  5. Grablevskij's Avatar
    Member
    Student or Learner
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Russian
      • Home Country:
      • Russian Federation
      • Current Location:
      • Russian Federation

    • Join Date: Aug 2007
    • Posts: 235
    #5

    Re: Flash cards to activate vocabulary

    They don't exist. What is wrong about that? Or you think that copy and paste 15 thousand phrases and translate them once is a too heave a job? When memorizing words I myself write everything by hand dozens of times.

    Everybody makes their own flash cards. At lease it is more useful.

  6. emsr2d2's Avatar
    Moderator
    English Teacher
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK

    • Join Date: Jul 2009
    • Posts: 52,024
    #6

    Re: Flash cards to activate vocabulary

    OK, perhaps "manufacture" was misleading in my original question. Am I correct in thinking, though, that you plan to create these flashcards yourself? Once you have done so, do you plan to be the only person who uses them?
    I'm just struggling to understand what your purpose is.
    Last edited by emsr2d2; 07-Oct-2019 at 15:30.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  7. jutfrank's Avatar
    VIP Member
    English Teacher
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • England

    • Join Date: Mar 2014
    • Posts: 9,824
    #7

    Re: Flash cards to activate vocabulary

    No, you should definitely not attempt to write 15,000 flash cards. That's way too many. Even 3000 is far too many. I don't even understand how you came up with the number of 15,000 anyway.

    Quote Originally Posted by Grablevskij View Post
    But as far as I remember the principles of using flash cards, only one piece of information shold be on a card.
    I disagree.

    But it is reasonable to dedicate a whole card to each phrase. Reasonable because otherwise there will be a lot of hints for the phrase. And we don't want any hints. We want to be honest with onselves.
    I don't understand what you're trying to say here.

    We'll get at least 15 thousand flash cards.
    Is this reasonable? Do you yourself practice such amount of cards?
    No, it is not reasonable. And no, nobody here has ever bothered to make such an astronomical number of flash cards!

    Before I advise you on what I think is a reasonable number, can I ask you how long you intend to use these cards for?

  8. VIP Member
    Retired English Teacher
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • Europe
      • Current Location:
      • Czech Republic

    • Join Date: Jul 2015
    • Posts: 15,469
    #8

    Re: Flash cards to activate vocabulary

    Also, think of the time involved. In the long distant past, I made flashcards for classroom use, some of which took over half an hour each to make.

    The phonetic symbol cards I made were very simple, and quick and easy to make, but they still took a measurable amount of time. Even if they took only 10 seconds each to produce and file, that would mean over forty hours to make 15,000.

    And, given that paper is about 0.1mm thick, 15,000 flashcards made of paper (rather than card) would stack in in a pile 1.5m high. If you use even fairly thin card, the stack will be over 2m high.

    If your paper cards are A6 size, your stack will weigh about 18kg.
    Last edited by probus; 07-Oct-2019 at 19:57. Reason: Fix typo
    Typoman - writer of rongs

  9. Skrej's Avatar
    Key Member
    English Teacher
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: May 2015
    • Posts: 3,025
    #9

    Re: Flash cards to activate vocabulary

    I see no reason why you can't put the word on the front of one side, and all five pieces of information (if you really feel you need all five). That still leaves you with 3,000 cards - too many to be effective.

    I personally don't see the point in including an idiom, as idioms are a separate issue. The definition of an idiom includes a meaning that typically can't be guessed at or reasoned out from the component words, so it seems pointless. Are there even idioms involving each of those words?

    I'm also not sure why you view the etymology as critical to activating vocabulary. I'm a native speaker, and while I like to think I have a larger-than-average vocabulary, I could maybe tell you the etymology of 1% of the words I know (on a good day) - and that includes educated guesses based on linguistics and foreign languages classes I've taken. I actually find etymology a fascinating subject, but the only time I've used it for vocabulary is to try and guess the meaning of a new word based off of Latin roots, not for recalling words I've already encountered.

    I use flash cards (or their modern-day electronic equivalents) fairly often. I also make frequent use of them with students, and have my students make them, but we're talking a hundred or less (over the course of months). I find that students prefer to use some kind of app or program, but I feel like making hand-written ones gives a sense of value to the cards, plus the process of writing them out helps with memorization.

    Regardless, rote memorization isn't the most effective way to introduce new vocabulary. There's a lot of debate and research on how many exposures it takes to fully activate vocabulary, but it takes somewhere between 10-20 exposures and double that for non-native speakers. Research also agrees it's about the variety and duration of exposure - you need to use it multiple ways (write it, speak it, hear it, read it, repeat it) multiple times over increasing periods of time. It's also about depth of knowledge, not just breadth. Most words have multiple meanings, and many can be used as several different parts of speech. Do you simply know just that one word, or can you recognize other forms of it, such as word families? Can you still recognize it with affixes, and do you know how those affixes change the meaning from the form you memorized?

    Again, there's a lot of debate on how many words a day people can learn, but there's a big difference between learning a word and being able to recall it later. The average native speaker of English has about 15,000 words in their active vocabulary, with another 15,000-20,000 passive. College educated speakers will have roughly double that. However, that number drops to about 5,000 words that are used repeatedly in day-to-day spoken and written conversations.

    My point about all this is that make sure the words you learn and fully memorize are words you'll likely encounter and actually need. Make sure you focus on how well you know them as much or more than how many you know.

    Also, since I wasn't familiar with this Oxford 3,000 list I looked it up. It seems to include many function words such as 'a', 'and', 'the', etc. Do you really need a flashcard with all that information just to remember the word 'a', or similar tier one words?
    Last edited by probus; 09-Oct-2019 at 11:40. Reason: Fix typo
    Wear short sleeves! Support your right to bare arms!

  10. Senior Member
    Other
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Polish
      • Home Country:
      • Poland
      • Current Location:
      • Poland

    • Join Date: Apr 2019
    • Posts: 898
    #10

    Re: Flash cards to activate vocabulary

    Quote Originally Posted by jutfrank View Post
    No, it is not reasonable. And no, nobody here has ever bothered to make such an astronomical number of flash cards!
    You underestimate me.

    A better way to learn words is to read. Words without context are as useful and easy to remember as mathematical equations without context.

Page 1 of 2 1 2 Last

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •