Results 1 to 18 of 18
Like Tree7Likes
  • 1 Post By Valda
  • 3 Post By Throbert McGee
  • 1 Post By fortheether
  • 1 Post By Valda
  • 1 Post By bublinka

Thread: How do I learn vocabulary?

  1. #1
    Новичок
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Posts
    4
    Rep Power
    0

    How do I learn vocabulary?

    I'm just starting to learn Russian and feel overwhelmed by all the different forms of words. When I learn a new word should I try to memorize the different cases for nouns or just the nominative and trust that I'll be able to figure out the others as I improve as long as they aren't irregular? Should I learn the masculine, feminine, and neuter forms of adjectives or just one? Or is it better to learn complete sentences?

    Thanks for your help.

  2. #2
    Завсегдатай it-ogo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Location
    Ukraine
    Posts
    3,049
    Rep Power
    25
    Now that is a problem. Sooner or later you will need all of that but you should switch on your intuition to help your memory. You need some reading experience to use intuition. So there should be some balance between theory and exercises.

    That's why courses are constructed to learn languages. You should select one more or less respectable textbook or set of lessons and follow it rather than try to memorize all at once. Each lesson usually contain some theory rules, some new words, some reading and some exercises. That is the normal way to learn languages for adult people.

    Try to check this thread.
    "Россия для русских" - это неправильно. Остальные-то чем лучше?

  3. #3
    Новичок
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Posts
    2
    Rep Power
    0
    Hi Steve,

    It's better to learn complete sentences than isolated words. On the flashcards you make, I recommend jotting down the nominative form (or infinitive, if it's a verb) and then mention what case the word is in in your example sentence. Also be sure to note accent shifts. So, if I were learning the word for "water", it would look something like this:

    I want water, please.

    Я хочу воду, пожалуйста. (accus.)
    nom = вода

    I'd also just learn the forms of a word on a need-to-know basis. Again, re: "water", you're much more likely to use it in it's nom or accus case than, say, the dative.

  4. #4
    Новичок
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Posts
    4
    Rep Power
    0
    Thanks o_xopowo. I was leaning towards doing complete sentences but I wanted to get some feedback first.

  5. #5
    Новичок
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Posts
    9
    Rep Power
    4
    Watch old translated movies, at first you wont get it, then you will get the tone, how to express, etc .. then you will know the most used words.. Good Luck!

  6. #6
    Властелин Valda's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Израиль
    Posts
    1,290
    Rep Power
    9
    Learn the 6 Russian cases in all forms (masculine, feminine, neuter and plural), only then memorize new words. It may take time to recognize the same word in different cases at the beginning, but once you get the hang of the cases, it shouldn't be a problem. In other words, it's more useful to memorize words after you picked up a bit of grammar.
    Medved likes this.
    "Особенно упорно надо заниматься тем, кто ничего не знает." - Като Ломб

    "В один прекрасный день все ваши подспудные знания хлынут наружу. Ощущения при этом замечательные, уверяю вас." -Кто-то

  7. #7
    Властелин Medved's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Wonderland of Russia
    Posts
    1,199
    Rep Power
    22
    In fact, before we learn English words, we learn plural forms, posessive form (Cat's house) and stuff, so Valda's right, it's a good idea to master some basics of grammar and just then start filling out your vocab. The only difference between English and Russian in terms of what to learn before you start learning words is that we have a tad more of the "stuff" in our language.
    Another month ends. All targets met. All systems working. All customers satisfied. All staff eagerly enthusiastic. All pigs fed and ready to fly.

  8. #8
    Новичок
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Posts
    4
    Rep Power
    0
    Thanks for the advice Medved and Valda.

  9. #9
    Завсегдатай Throbert McGee's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Fairfax, VA (Фэйрфэкс, ш. Виргиния, США)
    Posts
    1,591
    Rep Power
    35
    Quote Originally Posted by Steve K View Post
    I'm just starting to learn Russian and feel overwhelmed by all the different forms of words. When I learn a new word should I try to memorize the different cases for nouns or just the nominative
    My general recommendation:

    For nouns, always make a habit of memorizing the nominative and genitive singular at the same time. Once you get used to the general case declensions for Russian nouns, you will USUALLY be able to figure at all the other forms of a noun if you know the nom. and gen. sing. (As you progress, you'll learn that for certain categories of nouns it's helpful to memorize the nom. and gen. plural, too, along with the singular. And certain nouns have irregular case forms that you'll deal with later. But you really can't go wrong by always learning the nom. and gen. sg. of any new noun.)

    For verbs, you should at minimum memorize three forms: the infinitive plus the 1st-person sing. AND 2nd-person sing. of the non-past conjugation. In general, once you've learned the basic conjugation patterns, you can logically deduce the rest of the forms based on these three. (But, again, as you progress, you'll figure out that with certain verbs it's also extremely helpful to memorize certain other forms, especially the 3rd-person plural and the masculine past.)

    With adjectives, once you've picked up the general patterns, learning the masc. nom. sing. will usually allow you to figure out all of the feminine and neuter forms in both the singular and plural.

    Incidentally, a good-quality unabridged Russian/English dictionary will tend to reflect the above observations -- e.g., for the vast majority of nouns, only the nom. and gen. singular are given in a dictionary, because it's assumed that once you've digested the basic case-ending paradigms, you should be able to work out the other 10 forms based on these two. But a good dictionary will also list any "unpredictable" forms if a given noun happens to have them.

    Good luck!
    Lampada, bublinka and impulse like this.

  10. #10
    Властелин
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    The peoples state of New Jersey
    Posts
    1,135
    Rep Power
    16
    For verbs I recommend learning them in perfective/imperfective pairs.


    Scott
    Valda likes this.

  11. #11
    Новичок
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Posts
    4
    Rep Power
    0
    Nice post Throbert. thanks.

    Scott, yes I was thinking about doing that.

    So all I have to do is learn the forms Throbert mentioned, perfective/imperfective pairs, the grammar and complete sentences?!

    I've been doing a quick overview of the grammar. I guess I'll finish that then work on vocabulary. So for vocabulary flash cards I should put the whole sentence and the noun and verb forms mentioned?

  12. #12
    Властелин Valda's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Израиль
    Posts
    1,290
    Rep Power
    9
    Quote Originally Posted by fortheether View Post
    For verbs I recommend learning them in perfective/imperfective pairs.


    Scott

    That's definitely a must. Wish someone had told me that when I just started learning.
    fortheether likes this.
    "Особенно упорно надо заниматься тем, кто ничего не знает." - Като Ломб

    "В один прекрасный день все ваши подспудные знания хлынут наружу. Ощущения при этом замечательные, уверяю вас." -Кто-то

  13. #13
    Властелин
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    The peoples state of New Jersey
    Posts
    1,135
    Rep Power
    16
    Me too!

    Quote Originally Posted by Valda View Post
    That's definitely a must. Wish someone had told me that when I just started learning.

  14. #14
    Почтенный гражданин impulse's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    394
    Rep Power
    4
    Learn the nouns ending with ь with этот или эта. For example do not learn just день learn it as этот день or эта ночь. Otherwhise as you dig into the russian grammar more you will have problems with those nouns ending with ь.

    And for the verbs learn them in pairs and learn their declensions as well.

    Try to remember the conjunctions with the cases that they are used with.

    Etc...

    And try to repeat alot. Review the vocabulary you are trying to learn in a regular basis. Read as much as you can, listen and try to write as well. Infact if you can find a Russian friend to make conservations with I think that will be the best.

    It will not be easy but at the end I believe it will worth it.

    Good luck at your studies.
    Иди и учи русский!

  15. #15
    Почтенный гражданин impulse's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    394
    Rep Power
    4
    Quote Originally Posted by Throbert McGee View Post
    My general recommendation:

    For nouns, always make a habit of memorizing the nominative and genitive singular at the same time. Once you get used to the general case declensions for Russian nouns, you will USUALLY be able to figure at all the other forms of a noun if you know the nom. and gen. sing. (As you progress, you'll learn that for certain categories of nouns it's helpful to memorize the nom. and gen. plural, too, along with the singular. And certain nouns have irregular case forms that you'll deal with later. But you really can't go wrong by always learning the nom. and gen. sg. of any new noun.)!
    Why do you advice learning the nominative and genitive singular at the same time? How does that help predicting the other forms of the verbs? I am still a newbie at Russian and if that really helps I would like to review all the nouns I know up to this learning technique.

    Best.
    Иди и учи русский!

  16. #16
    Увлечённый спикер bublinka's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Moscow, Russia
    Posts
    53
    Rep Power
    7
    Quote Originally Posted by impulse View Post
    Why do you advice learning the nominative and genitive singular at the same time? How does that help predicting the other forms of the verbs? I am still a newbie at Russian and if that really helps I would like to review all the nouns I know up to this learning technique.

    Best.
    Nominative and genitive are cases for nouns, it has nothing to do with verbs. At first you may think that declensions are just bizarre, but in fact they are nicely arranged into a system. Otherwise, noone would be able to learn the language!
    So there are types of declensions, and if you know genitive - you know the type of declension - you know all other cases. This works not only for Russian students - when I studied Latin we had to memorize nominative and genitive at once too.
    impulse likes this.

  17. #17
    Новичок
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Posts
    9
    Rep Power
    4

  18. #18
    Почтенный гражданин impulse's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2012
    Posts
    394
    Rep Power
    4
    Quote Originally Posted by bublinka View Post
    Nominative and genitive are cases for nouns, it has nothing to do with verbs. At first you may think that declensions are just bizarre, but in fact they are nicely arranged into a system. Otherwise, noone would be able to learn the language!
    So there are types of declensions, and if you know genitive - you know the type of declension - you know all other cases. This works not only for Russian students - when I studied Latin we had to memorize nominative and genitive at once too.
    I started to review all the nouns I know. I wrote them down in an excel sheet and it makes over 300 nouns so far. So I need to write the genitive singular and plural for all these nouns and add in the other nouns usining the same method as I learn them.

    While I was writing down the genitive plurals of the nouns, I realized that I can distinguish the gender of the nouns ending with a sof sign. This is a new discovery for me and infact really makes it very easy to remmeber the gender. I really do not know the other benefits of this yet. I do not know how the genitive singular and plural of a nouns affects the form of the noun in other cases. I will onde day discover that I think.

    Best
    Иди и учи русский!

Similar Threads

  1. Learn Russian and English, and at the same time learn something.
    By Evgeny54 in forum Penpals and Language Exchange
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: June 21st, 2013, 06:11 PM
  2. Vocabulary: Teach Vs. Learn
    By Pollywog in forum Grammar and Vocabulary
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: December 10th, 2010, 01:11 AM
  3. I learn English, you learn Russian, let learn together
    By kkaattee in forum Penpals and Language Exchange
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: December 28th, 2008, 04:44 PM
  4. You learn Chinease,I learn English
    By javen in forum Chinese
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: August 12th, 2006, 05:26 AM
  5. Best ways to learn vocabulary
    By basurero in forum Grammar and Vocabulary
    Replies: 17
    Last Post: January 4th, 2006, 12:49 PM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  


Russian Lessons                           

Russian Tests and Quizzes            

Russian Vocabulary