Adventures of Learning a Language – Part 5

One of the best ways to build vocabulary when learning a new language is through the use of flashcards. Flashcards have proven to be one of the best learning tools when it comes to memorizing information as it allows you to quiz yourself repeatedly causing you to absorb the material you’re reviewing.

There are various methods for using flashcards to enhance your learning however they can be a bit complicated and time consuming. If you are impatient like me, this could be the biggest downfall to using flashcards in addition to the time needed to create new cards and keep them organized. My brother who is currently learning Japanese suggested I check out Anki.

Anki is a flashcard software program that implements the concept of spaced repetition, which is the idea that as you review material the intervals of time before you review it again should increase.

So how does Anki work?

Well, first you have to build your “virtual deck”. One of the great things about Anki is that it is completely customizable, meaning you can put anything into it that you wish to review and/or memorize. My “virtual deck” includes words, common greetings, phrases, verb conjugations, etc and I continue to add to it as I go through my Italian learning materials.

Once you’ve finished building your “virtual deck” you can begin reviewing. As you review each flashcard, you are asked to rate it: (1) Too Difficult, (2) Challenging, or (3) Comfortable. This will determine when the flashcard will be reviewed again, so be honest. If you cheat Anki, you are really only cheating yourself! 🙂

It’s as simple as that!

If you are looking for a new way to incorporate flashcards into your language learning then this might be the program for you and it’s free!

You can downloaded the latest version of Anki at http://www.ichi2.net/anki/

What are some of your memorization techniques for your language learning?

Check out my other “Adventures of Learning a Language”:
Adventures of Learning a Language – Part 4
Adventures of Learning a Language – Part 3
Adventures of Learning a Language – Part 2
Adventures of Learning a Language – Part 1

  1. Adventures of Learning a Language - Part 6 « Calabrisella Mia

    November 17, 2008 at 4:49 pm

    […] out my other “Adventures of Learning a Language”: Adventures of Learning a Language – Part 5 Adventures of Learning a Language – Part 4 Adventures of Learning a Language – Part 3 Adventures of […]

  2. Enrico

    November 15, 2008 at 2:34 am

    As of the now, the newest version of Anki adds a fourth option. So now it goes “too difficult”, “challenging”, “comfortable”, “easy”, or something like that. I wish they’d decide how they want to divide it up already. =P

    Ya, I’m expecting it to change up again but regardless Anki does what I need it to do.

  3. dora

    November 3, 2008 at 5:18 pm

    if you are looking for language flashcards to practice with for free also check out http://www.edufire.com.

    Thanks so much for the suggestion! 🙂

  4. saretta

    November 3, 2008 at 3:18 pm

    How interesting, I’ll have to check it out!

    Let me know what you think. I know it has worked really well for me! 🙂 Good Luck!

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