March 06, 2008


I was reading a news item in which Ngiam Tong Dow said something about vocabulary. It made me think of what my English teacher in secondary school said. He said that most people have a vocabulary of about 2000 words, which is sufficient for general use. By the way, all my English teachers from sec 1 to sec 4 were males. So were my Maths teachers in secondary school and Pre-U.

He didn't say where the information came from. Has this number changed now?

Actually to increase your vocabulary you need to put in determined effort. For example, when you read an article or a book and you like certain words, write them down and find out their meanings.

Or you can make a resolution to learn some new words every week.
You can just flip the dictionary to any page and pick a word that you fancy. Don't be too ambitious. Learning English is a slow process. Start with 3 words. Even with 3 words, after 1 year your vocabulary would have increased by about 8%. Haha, better than any return from other investments like bank deposits.

Now, although you know the meanings of these words you may not know how to use them yourself. If you are a student, use them in your compositions whenever you have the opportunities.


During a class discussion, a lecturer told us ' there are at least a dozen verbs you can use instead of walk '.

I have thought of this before. I was pondering about this again. With the help of a dictionary, I found these words:

limp, stroll, tiptoe, swagger, stagger, march, hobble, wobble, shuffle, stride, strut, hurry, scurry, inch..........
Hahah, thanks to the fugitive JI leader, now I think every Singaporean knows limp.

If you think of more words please add in to share with us.


Shao Hongxi, Singapore said...

I will be singing Cantonese opera “a peom by the seventh step " ( Three Kingdoms ) on stage at Kolam Ayer CC., Geylang Bahru Road, on Sunday, 9th March. The show will start at 715 p.m. If you are interested, call me at 64536529 or 81837632 for the free ticket (s) which you must come personally to collect by 700 pm. Tickets are free.

Shao Hongxi

Victor said...

Now with the Internet at our finger tips, it is very easy to google for synonyms and meanings of words on-line. My contributions: go on foot, amble, saunter, promenade, hike, toddle, perambulate, travel, go, move, locomote, wander, pace, tread.

fr said...

Vic: Thanks, I didn't realize got so many words.

Hongxi: Thanks, most likely I 'll watch a street opera, at the same time to meet old neighbours

Miko said...

I used to brush up my vocab using your methods too and it really works!