5 Ways to Increase your Persian Vocabulary

Expanding your Persian vocabulary is one of the crucial elements on your journey to becoming fluent in the Persian language.

While pronunciation and grammar are important, actually, it is vocabulary that provides the content of our communication, without it, we would get lost in the simplest conversations, and also we will not be able to make sense of a news article or follow a movie.

Experts seem to more or less agree that with somewhere between 2,000 and 2,500 words, a language learner can become relatively fluent in a foreign language.
So what are some of the best ways of expanding your Persian vocabulary and reaching that number?

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1. Learn in Context

Some of you can probably remember trying to learn long, dry vocabulary lists as part of our Persian lessons – and not being terribly successful!

New vocabulary is more meaningful and more memorable if set in a context, so please create sentences or stories using the new Persian words you’ve learned and try to approach your vocabulary learning by themes or topics.

2. See a Word, Speak a Word

A major part of Persian learning is not only recognizing words but also speaking words for communication. So, when you are working on learning a new Persian word, speak it aloud. Furthermore, it is a helpful tool for memorization.

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3. Be Curious

Keep noticing new words in Persian. If you come across a Persian word you don’t understand then look it up online or in your dictionary and find out how you say words that you frequently use in your own language.

4. Learn Word Parts

Even if you do not know the meaning of a Persian word, understanding the part of speech and word stems will make a big difference. For example, if you can identify suffixes or prefixes, you will be able to make a good guess.

5. Memorize Clusters or Phrases

Many learners find it helpful to learn whole phrases or clusters of words rather than individual words. While this will not work for building your entire new Persian vocabulary, it will be helpful for providing a basis for communication. For example, learn phrases such as چطوری؟ “How are you?” or من نمی فهمم “I don’t understand.”

Important Tips:

1. Reading

Reading is one of the most effective ways to learn Persian and increase your Persian vocabulary. Therefore, we suggest you spend some time reading in Persian every day.

To begin, you can start with short stories or texts. Please try to dedicate reading at least 15-20 minutes a day; it may be a blog, an article or newspaper, a book, a text, etc.

If you are very passionate about reading, you may start with bilingual books that allow you to compare texts in Persian with the translation in your native language.

Another useful tool is Persian books that are adapted to different language levels. They can be stories or novel collections that have been specifically designed for Persian learners to help them avoid frustration and to facilitate reading.

While reading, do not forget to write down all the new Persian words, on your mobile, notebook, etc.

2. Combining words

As you know, words are related to each other as they refer to specific fields and situations. Thus, when you learn one you will be automatically led to getting to know others. An effective way to expand your Persian vocabulary is to learn words by categories or topics.

For example, you may start to split words and verbs that you already know into categories («the house», «the body», «shopping», etc.) and then expand the related Persian vocabulary for each of them.

You can do that by associating new adjectives with nouns or making simple sentences combining nouns, adjectives, and verbs.

3. Watch series and movies in Persian

This way you will learn Persian words in context thus getting aware of how to use them properly in real situations.
Also, watching Persian movies and series will allow you to hear their pronunciation and the proper sound of the words.

Finally, we would suggest choosing movies and series that are not too complex or do not match your Persian level.

We want to suggest you watch a movie or a series chapter twice: the first time, turning on the Persian subtitles and the second one by turning them off. In the first case, you will be understanding and learning new words and Persian expressions. By watching it a second time you will be able to focus on how Persian words sound and realize how many new words you remember.

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