Vocabulary is an integral part of communication in any language. A wide vocabulary allows us to express ourselves more clearly and accurately, and to understand others better.
In the case of English, vocabulary is particularly essential, as it is a lexically rich language. In fact, it is reckoned that there are over 1 million words in English, and that most native speakers know only a mere fraction of these.
One of the best ways to build English vocabulary is through reading. By reading, we are exposed to a huge variety of words and expressions in their natural context. This helps us understand their meaning and learn how to use them correctly.
Reading in English as a tool for vocabulary development
Reading in English is a valuable aid to vocabulary development for a number of reasons. Firstly, it allows us to see how words are used in real life. This is significant, as the meaning of a word can differ according to its context. Secondly, reading helps us to acquire new words in their natural context. This is more effective than simply memorising lists of words. Thirdly, reading helps us to develop a sense of grammar and language structure. This is important, as it allows us to understand how words are used in combinations such as phrasal verbs.
💡Tips for developing vocabulary through reading💡
To make the most of reading as a tool for developing vocabulary, there are a number of tips we can pick up:
▶️ Choose material that you are interested in: If you are excited about the subject you are reading, you are more likely to focus on the text and be able to learn the new words.
▶️ Don't be fearful of unfamiliar words: It is inevitable that you will come upon words you don't know when reading. Don't panic about that. Just look up their meaning in the dictionary or an online dictionary.
▶️ Write down new words: Once you have learned the meaning of a new word, write down its meaning and an example sentence in a dictionary or glossary. This will help you remember the word and learn how to use it.
▶️ Use the new words in your own discussions: The best way to learn a new word is to use it. Try to use the words you learn in your own conversations. This will help you consolidate them in your memory.
Resources for vocabulary development
There are many available sources to help us develop our English vocabulary through reading. Some of these resources are:
▶️ Articles: Newspapers, magazines and news websites are excellent sources of vocabulary. You can read articles on topics that matter to you.
▶️ Books: There are many textbooks available in English, for all levels of ability. You can find them at your local library, in bookshops or online.
▶️ Blogs: Blogs are an informal way to read about a wide variety of topics. You can find blogs about your favourite hobby, your profession or any other topic that appeals to you.
Reading in English is a great and enjoyable way to enhance our vocabulary. With a little preparation, we can develop a wide and broad vocabulary that will enable us to communicate fluently in English.