Today I’m talking about some new vocabulary apps. Some of them may not be new to you but I’ve discovered them recently so I want to talk about them. The first one is TypeShift. TypeShift is an app from the Merriam-Webster dictionary people and I’m really excited that the different dictionary companies are really creating some interesting apps that help people learn vocabulary, vocabulary is hard to learn, you need lots of practice, we know you need lots of exposures, so having an app that does that is fantastic and this one is called TypeShift. TypeShift is a kind of a game that allows you to look for words and let’s just look at one.
So I go to Packs, and I’ve got a few really clear ones, let’s try this one, here is a simple one. So you have… Maybe I need to use Wacks, and Yacks, so you can see, you have to look around for a while and some are harder than others so you need to select your levels very clearly and you need to get, if you see on the top right hand, you’ve got percentages, when you get to 100% you can move to the next one, you can have hints and you can ask friends, if you’ve got friends on this app and you can see that if it’s not correct, it’ll simply let you know that this is not a real world but here’s the word Wares and I can use the word Execs, nope, no C there.
And you actually have to work quite hard and what I love about this is once you get something solved, so let’s go to something I’ve solved before, alright? A nice view will be a vista, right? And you can see now it’s erased, you might find one in a mall, that would be a kiosk, right? And then disgraced 90’s cartoon mascot… Camel? I don’t know. System in India would be a Caste, oh it was Camel. Obstruct breathing is choke and you can see how the puzzle is complete, so that’s one way to complete this and it gives you the time, so you’ve got the time element as well.
So this is TypeShift, you can do it with clues or without clues but it’s a great way to practice and learn new vocabulary and what I love about this is the Merriam-Webster dictionary actually allows you, when you’re done with a puzzle, to click on words you don’t know because sometimes you can spell words you don’t actually know the meaning of and it’ll take you over and show you the meaning of those words.
So that’s the first one that I wanted to show you, the second one I wanted to show you is called Wordie and Wordie by FastMind is another way to do vocabulary learning and this concept has been around for a long, long time and that is you have four pictures and you have to examine what word connects all of them and in this case it’s all cookies of some kind so let’s try to see if Cookie works here and you have to spell it, so you’ve got also the autographic component on top of that as part of the vocabulary learning strategies. Let’s try another one just for fun, so this is all about… So the clues actually include some of the letters and in this case I’ve got a few of the letters and I know that the term is Cheat and I got it correctly, so again, you can look at everything that is going on and get some clues to help.
Here’s another one and these are all, I think, Temples of some sort or another and you can see how that goes on. So this is a different way to approach vocabulary, what I love about that is that you have to understand the pictures but there’s minimal language input, it actually requires you to understand the term deeply and to think what connects it so it creates really thick and rich semantic webs in your brain and helps kids, or adults, really think about what is the meaning of vocabulary and how it connects to other concepts, so these are fantastic ways.
So this is Wordie and the last one that I want to talk about is more traditional, and this is Wokabulary, so it’s with a wok, and what you can do, is whether you do it in English or you do it between languages, you can create cards that become learning cards and you can say how well you know them and then it creates quizzes that allows you to test your own knowledge. So here’s the quiz, and you can see that it allows you to say how many questions there will be and if you want to filter them or anything else and now it starts, so here’s the word and this is the word Why in Hebrew and so I would look at it, I would translate it in my head and I would say it and then I would mark if it’s correct or incorrect and it gives me the answer, it gives me the other side of the card.
So this is an easy way to practice new vocabulary, you have to collect that vocabulary, you have to create your own dictionary, but it does allow you and the device itself to actually use also oral feedback so you can actually hear it and practice saying it. So this is Wokabulary, it’s very, very simple but I think a very efficient way for you to design your own practice and not to rely on outside sources defining what your vocabulary is.
So, today we’ve talked about three apps that do very different things when you practice about words. TypeShift helps you discover words within a structure, by shifting the columns, it’s very game-like, it’s lots of fun and it does allow you to explore meanings. Wokabulary allows you to practice through using a more traditional note card approach where you have a definition or the word in one language, if you’re working in multiple languages, and it has the audio on top of that and Wordie, that allows you to look at the common theme and really focus on semantics.