I'm embarking on an intense italian vocabulary learning routine, and I need some advice on how to maximize my effort using lexicons and flashcard software. [più dentro]
I've decided to expand my italian vocabulary in 2006. I decided to use a Leitner-cardfile
based flashcard software, and I was wondering if any of you could advise me on some technical questions.
1. How many words can I realistically expect to learn in one full year of daily practice
, knowing that I use a Leitner system, and that being French, Italian is a very easy language to acquire? 80% of the words are the same, although I'll be wary of false friends. I'm already fairly comfortable with the language, and can turn on RAI tv and understand 80% of what is discussed; however, i really want to prevent fossilization.
I read that around 5000 words in a year is realistic, how far can I extend that? I'd like to push to 12.000, but I don't know if it's doable.
2.What cardfile drilling schedule should I adopt?
I couldn't find anywhere online a sensible gradation of how many flashcards to have in each box on average, how often to test each box, and what parameters should be used. I'm afraid going through trial and error will waste a lot of time. An exponential interval progression makes sense, but I'd love some real world advice.
3. What source should I use to build the vocabulary cards?
I was eyeing three options:
-Use my dictionary to select the highest frequency words indicated in there. Unfortunately, they are listed in alphabetical order...
-Use this really cool picture based vocab book I have, which seems to contain all essential words for daily life, even though it's geared towards kids.
-Use a pretty advanced vocabulary book I have, which lists around 12.000 words, arranged by theme. I would love to master this one, as I feel it'd give me a fairly decent command of italian vocab.
Unfortunately, I couldn't find anywhere online a frequency bilingual lexicon for italian I could import in an app (I can use French or English base languages) - by the way, is building your own vocab file so much more efficient ?
4. Any opinions on flashcard software? Vtrain
seems praised on the intarwebs (though it looks like shilling at time), but I don't really need all the extra bells ands whistles. I just need regular flashcards, just writing. I've narrowed other options down to Pauker
, though Pauker is currently getting my preference.
There's a site about comparing flashcards apps
, but it seems related to the makers of Vtrain, so...
I'd like to add for context that I'll also work on grammar, conversation, reading and listening to italian TV everyday while doing this, so I feel it'll help isolated words get integrated, instead of being a mind-numbing routine. I never had a problem learning words in isolation, nor did it prevent me from using them in a fluent discourse.
Thanks in advance for any help or testimony from anyone having tried this plan ! :)