Snap A Language Into Your Memory

For language learners that encounter memorization difficulties, one solution is to familiarize yourself with your external environment or secondary environment. Through this unique method, any student can effortlessly memorize a new set of vocabulary and quickly pick up a dedicated language. To master your external surroundings, it is essential to select places that you go to daily besides your home.

Step 1 

Select three places that you go to regularly. For instance, these places can be the gym, the supermarket or your office.

Step 2

Now that you have selected your top three locations, grab a camera or phone and take five to 10 photos on the route between two destinations—for instance, from your home to your workplace. Try to take distinct photos and repeat this same routine with the other two locations.

Step 3

Let’s say that you have now collected seven photos per route. Take a marker and write on those photographs. Label everything you can, from the pavement to the clouds, in your dedicated language. Use an online translator tool to find words you don’t know You should have around 15 to 25 words per photo. Some items may repeat themselves in your photos, but this allows you to memorize them faster.

Step 4

Pick a destination of your choice. Before embarking on this route, review all seven photos and the words you wrote on them. Read the words and write them down a few times, so you are familiar with them.

Step 5

Drive, walk or bike to the destination while calling out every item you see in your target language. Remember the photos and words you wrote on them; the more you go to these destinations, the more you will be able to recall the words on the route.

An adage states that “A picture is worth a thousand words,” and it is especially true for language learning. Teaching with photographs creates a direct, sensory connection between learners and their subjects, resulting in new levels of interest and attention. Emotions and visual information are processed in the same part of the human brain. Visual stimuli and emotional response are linked similarly, and these two generate what we call memories. Hence, powerful images create strong impressions in learners. As a result, photographs can serve as memory storage and can activate memory recall.

Remember: Study anywhere, get somewhere.

Anthony Permaye, or the Language Chameleon, is a certified neuro-language coach, who offers a unique learning foundation that teaches individuals how to learn any language anywhere.