Anyone who is on a quest to learn a new language must be ready to learn lots of new words. This goes for you too if you are planning to sign up for a Japanese class in Singapore.
You need to be precise about the words you use since improper usage of words may cause embarrassment or have worse consequences. Therefore, it is beneficial to have a strong command of Japanese vocabulary.
Here are ways you can build your vocabulary when learning the Japanese language.
Prioritize important words
In any language, some words are used more frequently than others. These are the words that enable us to communicate what’s on our minds effectively and with ease.
If you are still taking beginner Japanese lessons, your priority should be focusing on words that enable you to express a thought or ideas entirely as well as pronouns.
Words like ‘not’, ‘good’, and ‘yes’, will help you to express your thoughts more effectively than adjectives and qualifiers such as ‘quickly’ and ‘beautiful’ which we use to connect and complete ideas.
Focus on the pronouns, and question words
Pronouns are words that refer to a person, place or item. Words such as “he”, “she”, “this” and “that” can bring your conversations to new heights. You don’t need to learn complex sentences to express yourself when you know these words. All you need to know is how to express the object in the sentence.
For example, “that tree”, “this house”, or “his tie”. In the same way, question words such as “who”, “what”, and “when” will enable you to engage in more conversations and take your vocabulary building exercise to new heights.
Although there’s no rule book or formulas to which words to master and which one to leave out you can use this as a guide:
- Beginners: focus on basic words and pronouns that enable the completion of a task or expression of an idea.
- Mid-level: focus on words that would provide continuity and coherency in your expressions.
- Advanced: focus on words that stir some interest in you and you can use them more from time to time in conversations.
Use the Pareto principle to grow from listening to talking into reading
The renowned Pareto principle which states that 80% of results come from 20% of resources can be applied towards language learning.
This means that your first 20 words will enable you to perform basic conversation, make simple requests and make sense of other people’s conversations. Therefore, as soon as you learn your first 20 words, make the effort to interact with other people. You will start making sense of conversations and learn a few more new words.
As you expand your vocabulary, the next 100 words can catapult you to a greater understanding level. Start delving deeper into reading newspapers and magazines, and your vocabulary bank will soar.
To conclude, you need to weave the vocabulary into your conversations. Building your vocabulary is not about cramming a dictionary. These techniques will help you to learn new words and aid your Japanese language lessons but you can only enhance your vocabulary if you apply them in daily life.