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Method 2: The Goldlist Method

The second method we’re going to present to you today was developed by David J. James, an English accountant and polyglot as well. He’s better known as Viktor D. Huliganov. David named his method “Goldlist”. If we are to quote him then the method is all about “putting back the long-term, unconscious memory into the learning process.” Simple focusing on the pure enjoyment of writing out new words (yes, some of us truly enjoy such a process) and interacting with those words inside of your mind in a pretty relaxed way, no need to pushing them into your memory. You don’t have to repeat it, learn it or memorize it on a demand.

You need to write only those words that you want to remember in a textbook along with the translations in your native tongue (it’s better to make two separate columns). It’s essential not to use a computer, since handwriting is attached with the tactile memory, this helps to ‘concrete’ an acquired information into your long-term memory. Firstly, you need to write the words from your right hand side of the page in your mother tongue or in the language from which you are learning the necessary language. Try to make no less than 25 words at a time. Secondly, always write down the date you’ve added the words to your list.

You always need to write in about 20 minutes. After the writing part is done and your vocabulary set of 25 is finished, start reading it through out loud (all the process should take no more than 20 minutes as well), take a 10-minutes break after. Don’t try to memorize the words you just wrote. It’s all about enjoying the process of writing them down in a good book with a nice pen in a pleasant and comfortable surroundings. You can write a 25-word list once a day or a week or anytime you that suits you, honestly, but David recommends not to overdo the process more than 10 times per day (i.e. 250 words for a day). In case you get somewhere near that number, make sure the sessions are separated with other things.

After 2 weeks and no more than 2 months, go back to the list you made and read it. Be honest with yourself and look for the words you don’t remember. Statistically, 30% of the words will retain. Then you can leave the words you remember aside (it’s somewhere around 8) and write the remaining 17 words on the right-hand side of the same sheet you initially wrote your 25-word list on.

This way you’ll get the list of expressions and words that are the hardest for you to learn. After you’ve repeated the process like ten times with two weeks’ break in between each session, you will have effectively learnt every single word from the list and from now on they’ll be stored in your long-term memory. It may sound like lots of time and efforts just to learn 25 words, but on practice it’s simply a matter of re-reading your list and identifying every 70% that you don’t remember, and re-writing them once again.