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Three easy tips to enormously increase your vocabulary

Vocabulary is one of the most difficult aspects to improve when learning a foreign language. Spanish has Latin as mother and English comes from German, so how can we make it easier? How can we learn new Spanish words when they don’t appear to have anything in common?

Let me give you three tips:

A notebook.

This is one exercise that I started to practise around forty days ago. I promised myself that I was going to learn ten new words every day and, apart from seeing the results, I now learn much faster. It’s incredibly satisfying to see how my memory is growing. It sounds tough work, but I promise that I only spent ten minutes daily, my journey on the bus from SALT to home.

Find similar words.

They don’t have to be exactly the same ones, there are many which are surprisingly related. “love” in Spanish is “amor” and “friend” is “amigo”. They don’t share any similarities but do you know what the adjectives “amorous” and “amicable” mean? Can you see the similarities now?

Fill your house with flashcards.

You don’t need to spend lot of money, a packet of post-its is enough. Put one on your door with “puerta”, by your window with “ventana” and in your kitchen with “cocina”. Apart from having the funniest flat in your building, you’ll passively absorb all those words and your vocabulary increase enormously without even realising it.

If you have more tips to increase your vocabulary, we would love to hear them. Please, share them with us by making a comment below.

SALT Edinburgh is the first centre dedicated exclusively to the teaching of Spanish courses in Edinburgh.
  1. mab gray
    I love all of your ideas. You may like mine. I have a blog called The Spanish Cheat Sheet. My trick is that I make goofy connections between Spanish and English.
  2. Helen
    Great ideas! I've switched my Satnav voice language to Spanish, so whenever I'm driving somewhere I'm hearing a little bit of Spanish!