Core Vocabulary: The English Words You Need to Know

Why is it taking so long to learn English?

Do you remember when you started learning English? It was so easy and fun! You learned so many new words. It was easy to learn words like dog and house and cheese. Before you knew it, you could form a sentence. One day you realized you could have a basic conversation with someone in English. That was exciting!

Then, something happened, and you’re not quite sure what. It’s taking more and more time now just to make small improvements. When you read something, you still have to look up many words in the dictionary. You learn lots of new words but you can’t remember them all and when you want to explain your opinion, you can’t find the right words to use. You can’t express yourself as clearly as you would like to, or as clearly as you can in your native language (the first language you learned to speak and are fluent in, and the language you use every day).

It seems to be taking a long time to learn English.

Here’s why:

This is a chart from Oxford Dictionaries website. The Oxford English Corpus (OEC) is a collection of texts (books, newspapers, magazines, blogs, emails, speeches etc.) that shows how the English language is used in real situations. It has information on all the words native English speakers use in speaking and writing. The people who put together the Oxford Dictionaries examined the OEC to see how many words native speakers actually use. In this chart, a lemma is the base form of a word; for example the lemma climb includes the different word forms climbs, climbing, and climbed.

According to this chart, you only need to know 10 words to understand 25% of everything native speakers say and write. You need to know 100 words to understand 50% of everything native speakers say and write, and 1000 words to understand 75% of all the words used in common, everyday English. That’s why it was so easy to get to the intermediate level.

Congratulations! You already know at least 75% of what native speakers say and write!

Now look at the 90% level. This is the most important part of the chart. Native speakers use just 7000 words for 90% of everything they say and write!

[Tweet “Native speakers use just 7000 words for 90% of everything they say and write!”]

To move from the intermediate level to the advanced or fluent level, you need to learn 6000 more words. That’s why it seems to be taking so long!

Of course, there are more than 7000 words used in English. It’s impossible to count all the words in the entire language, and new words are added all the time. Here’s how the Oxford English Dictionary explains English:

English consists of a small number of very common words, a larger number of intermediate ones, and then an indefinitely long ‘tail’ of very rare terms.

You don’t need to know all 1 million+ words in the English language. I am a native speaker, and I don’t know all 1 million+ words in English.

In the chart above from Oxford Dictionaries, I know all the words like at the 90% level. I can use all those words in a sentence. At the 95% level, I can understand the words saboteur, autocracy, and conformist. I have probably read them in a book at some point in my life, but I don’t use them in my everyday conversation. In fact, I don’t think I have EVER used those words in conversation!. At the 99% level, I have no idea what those words mean. I have never seen those words before, and I’m confident I don’t need to know them.

 

Not all English words are equal. Learn the right words.

Those 7000 words are the key to speaking English well. Those 7000 words are the core vocabulary of English. They are the most common words used in English. You need to know those words AND be able to use those words.

The less common words are important, but they are mostly for reference. You need to know them to understand what you’re reading or listening to, but you probably don’t need to use them in your everyday conversations.

You need to spend more time learning the 7000 core vocabulary words, and less time worrying about advanced, rare words. [Click to tweet this!]

 

How do I learn all 7000 core vocabulary words?

There is no list of all 7000 words, but there are resources on the internet that can help you identify core vocabulary words.

Oxford Dictionaries has a list of what it has identified as the 3000 most common words used in English. Oxford calls these words keywords. When you see or hear a new word, you can check this list and see if the word is on this list. When you look up a word in the Oxford Learner’s Dictionary (choose “American English”), you will see a key symbol identifying the word as one of the 3000 most common words on Oxford’s list.

Oxford Dictionaries also has an excellent resource called the Text Checker. You can copy and paste any text into the box, and click on “Check Text.” It will tell if you any words in your text are not on the keyword list.

Merriam-Webster’s Learner’s Dictionary also has a list of the 3000 most common words in English. Merriam-Webster calls these words core vocabulary. When you see or hear a new word, you can check this list and see if the word is on this list. There is no symbol in the listing that will tell you if it is a core vocabulary word. However, the Learner’s Dictionary has a great feature where you can save a word by clicking on the red star. You can return later to see your own list of words and study them. You need to set up an account with the Learner’s Dictionary to do this. (The Merriam-Webster’s Learner’s Dictionary focuses on American English.)

The Macmillan Online Dictionary has the best resource for identifying core vocabulary words. Macmillan has identified the 7500 most common words in English and calls this group of words core vocabulary. Macmillan does not publish a list of words in this group, but it has an excellent way of identifying core vocabulary words. When you look up a word in the Macmillan online dictionary, the word will either be red or black. If the word is black, it is not a core vocabulary word. It is just a reference word. If the word is red, however, it is a core vocabulary word. Further, Macmillan has a star system to identify how common the word is.

 

 

You can see that there are 3 red stars *** after the word opinion. This means that opinion is one of the 2500 most frequently used words in English. You need to know these words, you need to understand these words, and you need to be able to use them in conversation. Two red stars ** means that the word is one of the next 2500 most common words. Two-star words are part of the core vocabulary, but they are not as frequently used as the 3-star words. One red star * means that the word is one of the next 2500 most common words.

The Macmillan dictionary has very comprehensive entries for red words. You can see in the above listing for opinion, there is a long list of collocations, phrases, and sentence structures that go with the word. (NOTE: The Macmillan dictionary has both British or American definitions. At the bottom of the entry, you can change to the British or American definition.)

 

In the Oxford Dictionaries chart at the start of this article, the word the calyx appears at the 95% level. This is a black word in the Macmillan dictionary, so it’s not part of the core vocabulary. Also, it says biology, so I know that this is a word used in science, not in everyday conversation.

 

Don’t panic. Don’t get discouraged. Be excited!

Throughout this website and my listening lessons, I use the term core vocabulary to mean that 7000 words that Oxford Dictionaries identified as 90% of everything native speakers say and write. I check the words in all three dictionaries.

This entire post was written using core vocabulary. The only words in this entire article that are not core vocabulary are:

  • calyx (and I only used that word as an example of reference vocabulary)
  • blog, download, podcast (these words are still fairly new and are becoming common, everyday words)
  • indefinitely (used in a quote from another blog)
  • keyword (the name of Oxford Dictionaries’ list of common words)

Did you notice that there were a few words in this article in purple? Those words may seem like difficult or advanced words, but they are part of core vocabulary and you need to know those words, too!

Seeing or hearing a new word does not mean there is a problem with your English. It does not mean that your English is worse than you thought it was. It’s just another opportunity to improve your English.

Some of my students get angry at themselves when they don’t know a word or can’t remember a word. They think that seeing or hearing a new word means they have failed and they have not yet mastered English.

You will be learning new English words for the rest of your life. Read that sentence again. Even native speakers are always learning new words, so don’t get angry with yourself because you don’t know every word in the English language. You will never know every word in the English language. I don’t know every word in the English language!

Be excited when you see a new word! You are one word closer to being fluent and sounding like a native speaker!

 

Listen to the English Teacher Melanie Podcast

I created this podcast for you. The purpose of this podcast is to help you learn, understand, and remember core vocabulary.

The English Teacher Melanie podcast is a series of listening lessons. Each listening lesson includes a story. I write each story using core vocabulary. Each story is about something that happened in my daily life in Canada. It is easier to remember new words when you can connect the word to a real event.

Listen to the most recent listening lesson | EnglishTeacherMelanie.com

 

Pace Yourself

Remember, not only do you need to know a word, you need to be able to use a word in a sentence and in conversation. If you try to learn too many words in one day, you’ll forget more than you’ll remember. One to five words a day is a good pace to improve your vocabulary. There is no time limit for learning English! You don’t have to learn every word as fast as possible.

Some words may have multiple definitions. Learn the definition in the context of where you heard/saw the word. Don’t try to memorize every single meaning of the word all at the same time.

Learning English is not a race!

 

 

What do you think? Are you ready to focus on core vocabulary? How can you add core vocabulary to your daily studies?

 

(Please note: this article has been rewritten since it was first published in 2012. I have updated the information on how to identify core vocabulary words.)

 



64 Comments on Core Vocabulary: The English Words You Need to Know

  1. Juan Mosqueda
    October 29, 2012 at 6:16 pm (3 years ago)

    Thank so much it’s a great article with information so valuable that I will share with everyone I know that want to learn English.

    Reply
  2. sunny
    October 30, 2012 at 2:31 pm (3 years ago)

    really encouraging information.thanks madam.

    Reply
  3. Eric Roth
    October 30, 2012 at 10:38 pm (3 years ago)

    That’s a smart, sensible approach – especially if you’re learning English for academic purposes. You might also take a look at the Academic Word List (AWL).

    Reply
  4. Paul
    November 1, 2012 at 6:38 pm (3 years ago)

    Thanks for the interesting information. Thanks for motivation. Your work is very good and useful. You make a good job.

    Reply
  5. Ana
    November 4, 2012 at 9:31 pm (3 years ago)

    I think this is one of the best articles I’ve seen on the whole Internet about learning English, Melanie! Thank you very much and congrats!!!

    Reply
  6. mathembi sithole
    November 7, 2012 at 7:31 am (3 years ago)

    I’m a African woman who didn’t get an opportunity to learn English…but now i know that i still have time to learn and improve my ENGLISH..thanks…thanks

    Reply
  7. Ivo
    November 11, 2012 at 8:18 am (3 years ago)

    Thank you for sharing this dictionary with us, Melanie. It is really usefull and I will definitely start using it from now on.
    I would like to ask you for your opinion. What do you think is better (in the point of view of a native english) to speak fluently with some mistakes or to speak slower with less mistakes?

    Reply
    • Melanie
      November 14, 2012 at 4:36 pm (3 years ago)

      Hi, Ivo!

      I think you are confusing ‘speaking fluently’ with ‘speaking fast.’ Speaking English fluently doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to speak fast!

      Unless you have someone who can correct your mistakes when you speak, try to speak slower with less mistakes. Uncorrected mistakes become bad habits that take a long time to change!

      = )

      Reply
  8. Xavier
    November 13, 2012 at 10:18 pm (3 years ago)

    I was angry of myself for know understand a word even a sentences some time, but his article really motivated me to continue in my learning of the language and improve my vocabulary and pronunciation.

    Thank You so much

    Reply
  9. Eman
    November 18, 2012 at 8:52 pm (3 years ago)

    Thanks a million. :)
    This article is excellent.

    Reply
  10. Ivo
    November 26, 2012 at 4:53 pm (3 years ago)

    Thank you for your comments, Melanie :)

    Reply
  11. rahul kumar
    December 21, 2012 at 5:19 am (3 years ago)

    very nice post very good

    Reply
  12. Mukesh
    December 26, 2012 at 12:22 am (3 years ago)

    Thanks madam,

    Reply
  13. Fanny
    January 11, 2013 at 11:39 pm (3 years ago)

    Hi Melanie,

    Thank you very much for having this website for people like us that want to improve our grammar, speaking, listening and English pronunciation skills. One of my commitments for this year is to improve my English in every aspect and I am so glad that I find your web. Could you please let me know if there is any way that I can find the 7000 words through the Internet? Do I have to pay for it, I was looking at the MacMillan dictionary webpage and I found it kind of confusing.do you know if there is any chance that we can the dictionary in PDF or something like it.

    Thank you very much and have a wonderful new year!!!!

    Reply
    • Melanie
      January 16, 2013 at 4:31 pm (3 years ago)

      Hi, Fanny!

      I have not been able to find a list of the 7000 words! The Macmillan dictionary is the only resource I’ve found that even acknowledges the 7000 most common words.

      I use core vocabulary to tell a story in the English Teacher Melanie podcast, and at the end of the blog post for each episode, I list the core vocabulary I used in the story:
      http://www.englishteachermelanie.com/the-english-teacher-melanie-podcast/

      I will let everyone know if I ever find a list!

      I hope you have a wonderful year, too!
      = )

      Reply
  14. Avan
    January 15, 2013 at 1:44 am (3 years ago)

    Hi,thank you so much for this information,How can I find those 7000 common words?

    Reply
    • Melanie
      January 16, 2013 at 4:33 pm (3 years ago)

      Hi, Avan!

      Right now the only way to find them is to look up a word in the dictionary. I have not been able to find a list of those 7000 words!

      I use core vocabulary in the English Teacher Melanie podcast, and I list all the words at the end of each podcast episode:
      http://www.englishteachermelanie.com/the-english-teacher-melanie-podcast/

      I will let everyone know if I ever find a list!
      = )

      Reply
  15. Sriram
    February 19, 2013 at 2:18 am (3 years ago)

    Hi Melanie,

    Thanks for sharing valuable information. It has motivated me to learn new words.

    Am excited to learn all the information shared!!!

    Regards,
    Sriram

    Reply
  16. Phong Nguyen
    February 20, 2013 at 1:14 am (3 years ago)

    Incredible article!

    Thanks to the article, I finded my better way to learn core vocabulary.

    Now, I share with you my discovery.

    When you hear or see a new word, look it up in the Macmillan dictionary. If the word is in red, then it is part of the core vocabulary and you need to know this word!. After that, you should use website vocabulary.com to add these words. The advantages of the adding new words into the box in vocabulary.com is that you can see the same words in the different situation. That is my way to learn core vocabulary faster.

    Reply
    • Melanie
      March 26, 2013 at 6:42 pm (3 years ago)

      That’s great, Phong! Thank you for telling me about vocabulary.com. It looks like a useful website and I will take some time to learn more about it, but I don’t think I will recommend this site to students. It’s more for native speakers preparing for university (it would be a great site for TOEFL students). Macmillan is a dictionary specifically for people learning English. The definitions are easier to understand. Also, there’s nothing on the website that says who created vocabulary.com. I am always suspicious of websites with no information on who created it. What are they hiding?

      Thanks again,
      = )

      Reply
  17. Shawn
    March 6, 2013 at 7:18 pm (3 years ago)

    Dear Melanie,

    This is a great article and extremely helpful.

    I’m a corporate trainer at a very large steel company and I have a group of students that understand grammar, but lack the vocabulary needed to vocalize what needs to be said. I’ve been looking around for some ideas to help build their vocabulary and this is perfect advice.

    The Macmillan site is a fantastic discovery! Thank you for sharing it with the world.

    Reply
  18. belajar
    March 25, 2013 at 4:29 am (3 years ago)

    hy… i have though about this before i mean core vocabulary when i read some article in english. your web very useful and gave me spirit to keep on study english. thanks so much

    Reply
  19. Anurag
    March 29, 2013 at 1:01 pm (3 years ago)

    This article is so nice,so good.

    Reply
  20. Vera
    April 10, 2013 at 12:26 am (3 years ago)

    Always, Thank you for leaning your web site:D
    Although, Speaking, Writing, Listening aren’t easy for ours.
    However, I must I wanna be a great English educational, so everyday I try study harder than everydays.
    I want to your advise how I can get great everything about English. such as, I’m korean, but other people thinks, ‘Where’s her from? Isn’t it American?’
    ^^ Please advice about it!
    Sending my E-mail!~~
    Have nice day~

    Reply
  21. Ghoch
    April 10, 2013 at 4:50 pm (3 years ago)

    Thanks for your article but now I’m a little disappointed!
    I already know 1000 words and to move from the intermediate level to the advanced/fluent level, I need to learn 6000 more words, as you said.
    If I learn one word a day, it takes 6000 DAYS= about 16 YEARS ! to get the core of language.
    and at that time I would be able to understand 90% of english people and reaching to 95% would be impossible, because I need 43000 more words then 43000 more days to learn. it takes more than my whole life. Does it sound good to me? I don’t know
    beside as you know, knowing english is different from using it, so to use the words properly and skillfully I have a long endless way ahead.

    Reply
    • Melanie
      April 10, 2013 at 5:06 pm (3 years ago)

      As I explained in the post, most native speakers aren’t even at the 95% level. I am a university-educated English teacher, and I’m not at the 95% level!

      If you are doing a lot of reading & listening, you’ll learn more than one word a day. The more you see & hear words, the easier it is to remember them all.

      No one learns English in a day, and no one ever stops learning. You will be learning English for the rest of your life.

      Reply
  22. Agnes
    April 11, 2013 at 9:48 am (3 years ago)

    My heart is so happy than I see this article! Thanks! :) :)

    Reply
  23. Jo
    April 11, 2013 at 11:08 pm (3 years ago)

    Hi Melenie,
    I have been studying in oversea for almost 4 years now. However, my English skills is still very bad, my English vocabularies is quite poor( actually I can read n unde stand it but I don’t know how to apply in the real conversation). Also, my speaking, I speak my own language all the time eventhought I living in an English courtry;). It’s very sad and disspointed. I am started to feel depressing now.
    I really really wanted to speak English frequently, n FOUND YOUR ARTICLE quite good for me to LEARN. But just studying without someone to talk and practice with, it’s little hard. :(
    Hopefully, you don’t mind to give me some advice.
    Warmest wish

    Reply
    • Melanie
      April 12, 2013 at 1:57 pm (3 years ago)

      Hi, Jo!

      You are not alone. This is very common nowadays. I hear a lot from people who have immigrated to an English-speaking country, only to find they speak their native language more than English.

      You really have to make an effort to find people to speak English with. Find a job with English speakers. Do you play any sports or have any hobbies? Get involved in activities with English speakers. Watch English TV shows & movies. Do you live in a major city? Try to find a private tutor who you can talk to at least once a week, if not more. You can try googling “private English teacher ” (or instead of ‘teacher,’ type ‘tutor’).

      Good luck to you!
      = )

      Reply
  24. Hesham
    April 18, 2013 at 7:34 pm (3 years ago)

    Thanks so much Melanie really helpful article plz keep it up!!!!

    Reply
  25. marco
    April 18, 2013 at 10:07 pm (3 years ago)

    Thanks for the important information.
    It is so helpful for us. Have a great day :) melanie

    Reply
  26. Danilo
    May 9, 2013 at 3:04 pm (3 years ago)

    Hi Melanie. Great post!!! I really liked it.
    I think that the way you have explained is the best way to learn new words.
    We need to read / listen to English everyday and when we find new words we go to Macmillan dictionary and see if it is one of the words of the core vocabulary.
    I’ll improve my vocabulary that way.
    Thanks for your tips.

    Danilo (from Brazil)

    Reply
    • Melanie
      May 14, 2013 at 1:48 pm (3 years ago)

      Hi, Danilo,

      Thank you for taking the time to recommend that website to me. In the future, you can post information like that on Facebook or Twitter! I will take some time to learn more about it, but in the meantime I have deleted the information. The website does not say how they chose the words. It does not look like it is based on core vocabulary. It also looks like it focuses on British English. If you find that website helpful, continue using it.

      Thank you again,
      Melanie

      Reply
      • Danilo
        May 14, 2013 at 2:37 pm (3 years ago)

        Hi teacher, it’s me again.
        Thank you for your reply.
        After you take a look at that website, let me know what you think.
        One more thing: What do you think about my English? Is it too bad?

        Reply
        • Melanie
          May 20, 2013 at 12:47 pm (3 years ago)

          Hi, Danilo,

          I think your written English is good! Do you have a purpose or goal (ie. studying at an English university or taking an English test)?

          = )

          Reply
          • Danilo
            May 23, 2013 at 3:41 pm (3 years ago)

            No. I just want to be able to speak / write well and understand native speakers.

  27. Ahmed
    June 4, 2013 at 3:03 pm (3 years ago)

    This is absolutely one of the best articles I ever read in my life … ^^ thank you

    Reply
  28. FASLOON
    June 4, 2013 at 4:20 pm (3 years ago)

    Thank you i learn lot of really good one . i thing improve my English hardly

    Reply
  29. rajni
    June 8, 2013 at 6:55 am (3 years ago)

    Thanx Melaine for such a motivated article.

    Reply
  30. Thipan
    June 22, 2013 at 4:36 pm (3 years ago)

    you help me to improve my English, thank you, thank you.

    Reply
  31. Laurent
    June 30, 2013 at 2:58 pm (3 years ago)

    Melanie (Mélanie in French)

    Thanks a lot for your work and for helping us to improve our vocabulary in English. I have read this article completely and I have decided to use the Macmillan dictionary with its “red stars” and to have directly the English definition of a word, and not a translation into French.

    A question: you are using the word “angry” and the expression “to be angry at myself”, and in another place, you don’t use anymore “at”, but “with”. Could you explain?

    Laurent

    Reply
    • Melanie
      July 3, 2013 at 4:16 pm (3 years ago)

      Hi, Laurent!

      I love the way my name is pronounced in French!

      According to Macmillan (http://www.macmillandictionary.com/dictionary/american/angry) there is a difference,
      angry about/at/over SOMETHING
      angry with SOMEONE

      … but according to Merriam-Webster (http://www.learnersdictionary.com/search/angry) ‘at’ & ‘with’ are interchangeable.

      I always thought they were interchangeable, so I wouldn’t worry about it. If you said, “I’m angry at myself,” it sounds correct and someone from America or Canada wouldn’t know the difference.

      = )

      Reply
  32. stephen
    July 1, 2013 at 1:10 pm (3 years ago)

    thanks so much melanie for this brilliant article.
    but i would like to ask you about something,actually i’m lover of reading books,and i decided to read novels,but this is a little bit diffcult to me because i have to look up some words in the dictionnary,somebody told me to understand from the context but i find that not good because i miss some words that could be important in the novel. could you tell me the efficient way to solve this problem.
    Thank you in advance

    Reply
    • Melanie
      July 3, 2013 at 4:36 pm (3 years ago)

      Hi, Stephen!

      If you can’t understand a sentence or paragraph because you don’t know a word & can’t figure it out from the context, it’s OK to look up the word in the dictionary. However, if you have to look up a word in EVERY SENTENCE, this means the book is not quite at your level. You won’t be able to remember every word you look up, & it makes it much harder to read the novel.

      The ‘Five Finger Test’ will help you find a book at your level: open the book to any page and read that page. Put your finger on all the words that you don’t know & don’t understand. If you use all five fingers, and there are still more words you don’t understand on the page, the book is not at your level. If you don’t use all 5 fingers, the book is just right for you!

      Look for ‘graded readers.’ They are novels written for English learners at different levels. Sometimes the authors even rewrite popular novels to make them easier for English learners to understand.
      http://www.penguinreaders.com/pr/students/index.html
      http://www.macmillanreaders.com/
      National Geographic Learning Leveled Readers
      (http://ngl.cengage.com/search/showresults.do?N=185+4294918503+4294917956+4294918007+4294918005)

      = )

      Reply
  33. Sandy
    July 22, 2013 at 3:54 am (3 years ago)

    Greetings Melanie, Thanks a ton for such a brilliant article. I am sure this gonna help me a lot in my daily learning. Really appreciate your effort towards english learners :)
    One thing I would like to ask…As far as I know we need to practice daily for atleast 30 minutes by reading any english article (louder) so as to build our mouth muscles for this foreign (for me) language. Could you please advise any website where I can find such articles that can mould my mouth muscles for English language (daily use).
    Thansk again!
    Sandy

    Reply
    • Melanie
      Melanie
      July 22, 2013 at 2:58 pm (3 years ago)

      Hi, Sandy,

      I’ve never advised students to read English articles out loud for 30 minutes every day to practice English pronunciation. I don’t see the point in this because if you pronounce a word incorrectly, how will you know? If you repeatedly pronounce a word wrong, it will become a habit & it will be hard to correct in the future. I advise practicing for 30 minutes a day, but not just reading out loud.

      I recommend imitation. For example, listen to my podcast & try to imitate my pronunciation. Since you can hear me saying the word/phrases, you will know right away if you are pronouncing the word incorrectly. Even better, you can record yourself, and hear how you sound compared to how I sound.

      You will find more resources in these two articles:
      http://www.englishteachermelanie.com/study-tip-how-to-improve-your-english-pronunciation/
      http://www.englishteachermelanie.com/study-tip-how-to-practice-listening-english/

      Good luck!

      Reply
      • Sandy
        July 23, 2013 at 12:56 am (3 years ago)

        Thank you very much for your quick response Melanie. I am sure my pronounciation is bad for lot of words, however I am confident that it’s good for most of the words. Moreover during reading if I come across any word that I don’t know how to pronounce, I always use IPA, phonetic symbol from Oxford to pronounce it correctly. And as you mentioned, Yes I record myself during readings so as to find any discrepancies in pronounciation through your podcasts and other resources and try to eliminate it right there :)
        I practice daily with full dedication for around 2-3 hours. My target is to reach at Intermediate level, if not perfect. :)
        I am sure, I’ll come across a lot of hurdles and I’ll keep you posted of those, as I consider you my online mentor :)
        Thanks again!
        Sandy

        Reply
  34. marcelo
    September 17, 2013 at 9:57 am (2 years ago)

    Great article…
    I’m gonna send to my students.

    Reply
  35. Arul Doss
    September 21, 2013 at 2:58 am (2 years ago)

    Consists of an absolutely encouraging information. I keep growing on the way i opt for. Thank you once again…..!!!

    Reply
  36. c.thomas noble
    October 15, 2013 at 8:32 am (2 years ago)

    thank a lot for your service.

    Reply
  37. José
    October 22, 2013 at 9:59 pm (2 years ago)

    Hello , Melany. You are awesome teacher. I like your manner of teaching ,You can teach us very easy and with passion.I intend to visit Canada in the future ,I have a nice who live in Toronto and who knows we can speak tet a tet as we say here in Brazil. I like to travel and english language is our international communication.Your tips and lessons are very important and I listen and read all about. Thank you very much ,and God bless you . All the best.

    Reply
  38. Khaled
    October 28, 2013 at 7:48 am (2 years ago)

    Thank you very much teacher Melany , I’m very happy for finding a kind teacher who takes care about his student , and this is really exciting for me to explore the best way in English learning that facilitate reaching fluency for me .

    But I have a question if you kindly reply me , what do you think is better for finding out important vocabularies , reading English news , essays , …etc. and learning new words ?, or just following up Macmillan dictionary for the above mentioned purpose ? ,

    In fact , I ask this question because I don’t have a lot of time to spend during English learning , and I want to do on the best route for that ,

    I will appreciate your kindly response ,

    Khalid :)

    Reply
    • Melanie
      Melanie
      October 28, 2013 at 2:52 pm (2 years ago)

      Hi, Khaled!

      Use the Macmillan dictionary as you would any other dictionary. Read something in English or listen to natural spoken English. If you read or hear a word that you don’t understand, search for it in the Macmillan dictionary. If the word is red, learn this word. If the word is black, don’t spend a lot of time trying to learn that word, unless it is a word you need to know for your job.

      = )

      Reply
  39. Khaled
    October 28, 2013 at 8:00 am (2 years ago)

    An other enquiry if you kindly don’t mind , where could me find the listed 7000 words in one thread , I mean should me search for the word in the macmillan dictionary and then face it’s level (*** red , ** red , * red , black ) ? or there is exactly thread or book that lists the 7000 word directly ?

    waiting you teacher :)

    Reply
    • Melanie
      Melanie
      October 28, 2013 at 2:51 pm (2 years ago)

      Hi, Khaled!

      There is no list, thread or book that lists the 7000 words. A list won’t help you. One word can be different parts of speech: noun, verb, adjective; or one verb could have many different meanings. You need to learn words in context.

      = )

      Reply
      • Khaled
        November 4, 2013 at 2:04 am (2 years ago)

        Thank you a lot teacher Melanie , that’s very helpful and kind to explain the vision for me . I’m going to follow up as you mentioned , hopping I will find it easy and exciting .

        All the best

        Khaled :)

        Reply
  40. Béla Hegedus
    November 4, 2013 at 5:37 pm (2 years ago)

    Dear Melanie,
    I am a fellow English teacher. I teach my students vocabulary with what I call the five words a day method. I am currently working on my masters degree and would like to write about this method in my dissertation. I am having a hard time finding any support for why five words and not more. So I thought I would ask. Where did you come across this idea. Do you have any name or research attached to it by any chance? Please let me know if you do. Thanks for your time and attention. Great website. Best wishes: Béla

    Reply
  41. najmeh
    November 15, 2013 at 1:02 pm (2 years ago)

    hi Melanie
    thanks for your site, its so useful.
    i have a question, when i want to speak English i cant think as an English person but just translate word by word from my native language to English, i don’t know what should i do?:(

    Reply
    • Melanie
      Melanie
      November 15, 2013 at 4:56 pm (2 years ago)

      Hi, Najmeh,

      Instead of memorizing one word at a time, try to learn phrases or sentences. Learn collocations (http://www.englishteachermelanie.com/study-tip-what-are-collocations/) so that you know all the words that go together.

      Read everything in English. Listen to everything in English.

      It will get easier!

      = )

      Reply
  42. lwin
    April 25, 2014 at 10:14 am (2 years ago)

    thanks a million for this great articles!
    you understand our points!

    Reply
  43. shifa
    May 28, 2014 at 5:33 am (2 years ago)

    it is very good

    Reply
  44. elijah
    December 27, 2015 at 4:02 am (1 month ago)

    wonderful and useful….. appreciate a lot

    Reply

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