How to Use Flashcards to Boost Your English Vocabulary

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Unlock the secret to building an impressive English vocabulary with this comprehensive guide on using flashcards! Learn my proven strategies to help you learn, internalize, and retain new words effectively. Say goodbye to memorizing and start truly understanding the words you learn!

Hello, Advanced English learners. Welcome back. Recently in our community, we took personality tests and shared our results with the group. Some members felt that they completely agreed with those results while others didn't think so and took the test a few times to see if it would be more accurate. It was a really fun discussion, and if you yourself would like to partake in those, then I'd encourage you to join our community, Explearning Academy. You can sign up by going to We would love to have you. 

In this lesson we'll discuss how to use flashcards to build your vocabulary in English and boost your words.

Flashcards can be an effective tool for building your vocabulary in English by creating flashcards with words and their definitions. And if you go a step further and write out a practice sentence in context. You can study and review the words regularly to help you remember their meanings. You can also use the words in sentences to help you learn how to use them correctly in context.

Quizzing yourself on the words can also help you to test your knowledge and see how well you've learned the words. By using flashcards and following these steps, you can effectively improve your vocabulary in English. 

Alright, so here are some steps that you can follow. 

Start by writing a word on one side of the flashcard and its definition on the other side. If you're using digital flashcards, you can create a new flashcard for each word. And type the word and its definition on the flashcard. Be sure to review the flashcards regularly. This is really important. It's not enough just to write out the word, the definition and a sentence if you don't regularly and often look at those flashcards.

You should set aside a specific time each day to go over these flashcards, or you can review them whenever you have a few minutes of free time. I always tell my students work on English every time you are in between activities, so in those transition periods, because that way that adds up over time. And as you review each flashcard, try to say the word out loud and think about how it is used in a sentence.

It's very important to use the words in context. After you have studied a flashcard, try to use the word in a sentence to help you remember its meaning. For example, if you're studying the word benevolent, you might say something like " the benevolent king offered food and shelter to the less privileged." 

Quiz yourself. After you have studied a set of flashcards, test yourself to see how well you retained the information and have learned the words. Remember, the goal is not memorization, it's internalization, right? We wanna internalize the words. So you can do this by covering the definition on the flashcard and then trying to recall the meaning of the word, or you can do the opposite, cover the meaning of the word, and then try to come up with the word itself.

Or by writing sentences, using the words on the flashcards, using them in real life scenarios. Mix up the flashcards to keep things interesting. You can try mixing up the flashcards so that you didn't memorize the order in which you had the flashcards already, and study them out of order each time in a different order, study them. This can help prevent you from becoming bored or memorizing, and it can also help you learn the words more effectively because it adds that extra challenge to your brain that causes you to think about the words, their definitions, associating them, and also using them in context.

Let's now look at an example using the word eccentric. So write the word on one side of the flashcard, be it digital or just on paper, and then it's definition on the other side. So the word: eccentric. Definition: a person who behaves in a way that is unusual or strange. Then review the flashcard.

Do this as often as possible during those in between moments, those transition times during your day. And as you review the flashcard, try to say the word out loud and think about how it is used in a sentence, because we really wanna be able to use these words in the correct context. For example, "she is known for her eccentric fashion sense."

So use the word in context. That's very important. After studying the flashcard and feeling more confident about the words and the definition, try to use the word in a sentence to help you associate the meaning to the word and also its pronunciation. For example, "the eccentric artist always wears a top hat and monocle to his gallery openings."

Quiz yourself. After studying a set of flashcards, test yourself to see how well you've retained the words. Have you internalized them? You can cover the definition. Find a way of recalling the information. Use it in a sentence, write more sentences. Again, context is very important. For example, can you define the word eccentric?

Can you say it right off the top of your head? Write a sentence using the word eccentric : "the eccentric old man in the neighborhood is known for his collection of rare birds." Then be sure to mix up the flashcards, keep things interesting. Don't let your brain get too stuck in a pattern of memorizing.

Again, it's not about memorizing. We want to internalize. And by mixing it up that can help you do that. For example, maybe you decide to study the flashcards in alphabetical order one day and in completely random order the next day. It's up to you, but find a way to switch it up.

So how will this technique of using flashcards help you retain the newly acquired vocabulary? Well, first, the act of writing the word and its definition on the flashcard helps to commit the information to your mind and internalize it.

Reviewing the flashcards regularly also helps to reinforce the information, keep it fresh in your mind, top of mind, and again, work towards internalizing it. Additionally, using the words in context and quizzing yourself sporadically and frequently on the flashcards helps you to test your knowledge and ensure that you are in fact internalizing the information.

By following these steps and incorporating flashcards into your study routine, you can effectively retain the newly acquired vocabulary. 

Are you ready to put this into practice? Well, I have a week of activities for you to practice each of these flashcards strategies. If you are a member of our private community exploring Academy, So if you would like the quest, the weekly plan of exercises, the discussion that goes along with it, and an opportunity to submit questions or ask me live, then you can sign up for a community by going to Or simply use the link down below. See you there.

To sum up, using flashcards is a simple and effective way to improve your vocabulary acquisition. By writing the words and their definitions on the flashcards, reviewing them regularly, using the new words in context and quizzing yourself can also help you to retain the information, internalize the words, and use it in the correct contexts. 

By following these steps and incorporating flashcards into your routine, you can build your vocabulary and improve your communication skills in English. 

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