Monday, January 21, 2008

Language Challenge

Okay, I've found my word list. My friend Janet lived in Norway for a few years and she loaned me some books to bring with me. My favorite: Richard Scarry's "Året Rundt I Travelby" ("Year-Round in Busytown").


It's full of drawings of all kinds of everyday things and activities, each labeled. Here's a typical page, this one is about colors:


(Yes, I can now say in Norwegian "a yellow bananamobile" and "a rainbow-colored pencil-car"!)

This book has 700-800 vocabulary words, which is a good amount and good scope of words for everyday use. This will be a good test. I'm giving myself exactly one week to learn them all perfectly... that's 7 pages per day. The key will be to create a bizarre image for each word to effectively store it in memory. For example, on the first page I learned "headlight" and "windshield" like this: someone is kneeling in front of a car licking the headlights clean, headlight = frontlykt; a windstorm has blown over a tree and its roots have crashed through the front of a car, windshield = frontrute. If the image is strong enough, then I need only learn it once. It takes some effort to come up with the image, but it should be worth it. We'll see!

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