Repetition is a powerful thing.
I thought I was a bad language learner, because I anticipated that I should be able to remember a word after seeing it 2 or 3 times. I felt a huge sense of relief when I read people often have to see a new word 20 times before it sticks.
Repetition is something I am not making the best use of in my learning. I look up a word in the dictionary, write it in a letter once, write it down on a list of interesting words, and promptly forget about it and move on to new, shiny words. Only those words I use all the time, that I have looked up many times, have really stuck. I’m dabbling with various flash card techniques, but none has seemed to perfect fit for me.
I do enjoy taking pictures and putting Korean words on them. I look at my own picture flashcards more than any other method, especially if I have used a picture of someone I know. Have my blog readers noticed I change those flashcards weekly?
When I was in Toastmasters, I use to give speeches. Every speech was unique. I never thought to try giving the speech more than once, to see how I could improve upon repetition until I met the District President who was visiting all the clubs in his District giving the same speech. I found that when I gave a speech over and over, it could be perfected. Of course, you have to keep finding new audiences who haven’t heard the speech yet. Haha.
In the same way, I should try repeating Korean words I know and find new ways to use them. Having a core set of words that I am so familiar with that I could use reflexively would help with making myself understood when I try to communicate. I need more than just hello, thank you, give me please, and good bye. But I don’t need 2000 words I have seen just once. I need the comfortable words I can readily use without having to look them up, even if that is just 50 words.
Baby Dinosaur would say “Again!” (Remember this TV show?)