If you are someone who hates the idea of using flashcards. And literally cannot fathom how people learn with those ancient paper cards, then this post is for you. I am going to break down my new vocabulary study method that doesn’t include any flashcards! We are going to use Memrise to learn Korean words.
If you do like using flashcards and are just looking for a change of pace, check out my post, How To Use Flashcards To Learn Korean Vocabulary.
Disclaimer: I got this method from a girl named, Natalia Garaza, on youtube, you can watch her original video here! I modified her original method to fit my needs.
This post contains affiliate links, which means that I may get compensated for any links that you click or buy from.
No flashcards? No problem! Use Memorise to Learn Korean words.
Okay so for this method we will be using the app Memrise to learn Korean words! It is an app you can use on your phone and they also have a website. Firstly go to the website, make an account, and search for the name of your textbook.
If you are in the market for a new Korean Language textbook and don’t want to spend any money, I have a post, 4 Free PDF’s of Korean Language Textbooks. I have 4 quality textbooks that you can use to study Korean.
Memrise most likely already has your textbook’s vocabulary list already on the site. Especially if you are using TTMIK (Talk To Me In Korean) like I am. Once you find your textbook’s vocabulary list, add that textbook to your account.
Okay so once you have the list, you can then go through the list and learn words. Memrise will first give you a word and the definition. Then it begins to test you on how well you know the word. One cool programming feature is that the app knows when the brain begins to forget a word. So when you begin to forget a word, it will pop back up. Therefore ingraining the word into your long-term memory.
I usually go over 2-3 TTMIK lessons the day before. Then the next day I will use Memrise to learn Korean words by reviewing the words on the app. So to clarify, I usually go over 2-3 TTMIK lessons the day before. Then the day after I go over grammar I go over the vocabulary used in the lessons using Memrise. I actually have a post named, How To Create A Korean Language Self Study Routine. In that post, I detail my personal Korean self-study routine.
Quick Tip: Make sure you are speaking everything out loud as you go over the vocabulary. I mean you should be talking NONSTOP during your Memrise review time. This helps you to get comfortable speaking Korean!
Also for some great speaking practice, you should sign up for Italki! Italki is a great site that gives you one-on-one language lessons/ speaking practice for as little as $5 per session. I personally use it for Korean speaking practice. And I love how I get undivided attention and the person is paid to help me become a better language speaker. And all for $5 or more!
Still, Can’t get the words to stick?
Okay so let’s say you went through all the vocabulary from the lessons on Memorise. But, one or two of the sentences just won’t stick in your mind.
For this, you have two options. Option 1 is to go back to the TTMIK lesson and see the sample sentence that was given. It’s easier to learn words within context. So knowing how the word can be used in a normal conversation can help the word get into your long-term memory bank.
After you find the sample sentence. Read it out loud a couple of times. Then write the whole sentence down a couple times. Read the sentence out loud as your write. By doing this you should be able to get the sentence into your mind.
Option 2: Sometimes TTMIK doesn’t give a sample sentence, or maybe you just don’t like the sample sentence. If this is the case, then go to Naver dictionary. Naver itself is like the Korean Goggle, you can find everything on there. So Naver Dictionary is like the official dictionary, kind of like how dictionary.com is to us westerners.
So type in the Korean word you are studying. Once it pops up there will be sample sentences underneath that sentence that native Korean people themselves have written. Once you find a sample a sentence you like, just repeat the same steps for option 1.
My only issue with option 2 is that a lot of the time, the native Korean speakers give sample sentences that use higher-level grammar. The grammar that most low intermediate learners haven’t come across yet. So it’s best to just get the sample sentence from your textbook. But if you are a higher level, then use Naver, it’s great for creating natural phrases.
How long is this supposed to take?
So for me, I have whole days just for studying vocabulary. This is because I found that although I was learning a lot of grammar my Korean word bank sucked. In regular conversation, I couldn’t remember anything.
So I study vocabulary for usually 1-2 hours. It depends on how well my brain is retaining the information. Sometimes I don’t need to go back into the lesson, looking for sample sentences. Sometimes Memrise is enough for me. Other times it’s not.
So I do have those 2 hours blocked off so that I have time to go more in-depth if I need to.
Have patience with yourself. Learning a new language is not easy, and honestly can be very frustrating at times. Especially when you are trying to learn a certain word and no matter how many times you write it down, it just doesn’t stick. I get it! For those types of days, just walk away, and save it for another time.
Language learning is supposed to be fun and challenging. So don’t be so hard on yourself!
Other Post You May Be Interested In:
- How I Became Intermediate in Korean
- 7 Tips for Improving Your Korean Study Sessions
- Must-Have Korean Study Supplies
- How I Find Motivation to Study Korean
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