Use logic to guess the meaning of the unknown word or phrase. You can use what you know about English, your native language, the context, pictures, and anything else to help you.
Example: You are reading a dialogue about school and you see the word "to study", which is not familiar to you, again and again. Based on your knowledge of English, you figure out the word is a verb. You also notice that many of the words close to the mystery word are school subjects such as mathematics, literature, biology, and music. Based on all this information, you guess (correctly!) that the word must mean to study.
Why should I use this strategy? There are too many words in English for you to look up all of them in the dictionary. Imagine what a difficult and boring task if you spend the time always in a dictionary. Guessing can help you solve your problem quickly.
If you need help or don't understand something, ask a question.
Example: Your teacher uses an unfamiliar word, such as "accountant", when you are studying professions. You could find out the meaning by asking a question such as, "Does this person work in the city or country? Does this person work with money?" Asking specific questions can give you the information you need. Sometimes a general question like "What does it mean?" does not give you the most accurate information.
should I use this strategy?
Asking a question makes you an active, responsible learner. You will
understand and feel better in class if you know what's going.
If you need help, you can use reference materials such as dictionaries, textbooks, computer programs, and the Internet.
Examples: You are studying at home and you don't understand a word. You try to guess the word but you still don't understand. You feel like the word is very important and without knowing the word you cannot understand the story. You decide to use your dictionary to find out the meaning.
You are studying English in the computer lab with your class. You don't understand the grammar in the English Discoveries exercise. You want to ask your teacher for help but she is helping another student. You decide to use the help feature in English Discoveries to learn about the grammar on your own. You know if you still don't understand, you can always ask your teacher later.
should I use this strategy?
Looking up unfamiliar information in a reference source can help you solve
complex problems, especially if no one is available to help you.
can I remember so many words?
Think of a "keyword" that sounds like the new word, and imagine it as a
Why should I use this strategy? Using the keyword method creates a visual and personal association between meaning and sound, and these mental links help you remember the vocabulary item.