Learning and revising

Establish a routine

A routine means doing certain things regularly in the same way. And if you are using this book for self-study (= to study alone), it helps to have a routine. Decide how much time you can spend on the book each day or each week. If you are studying a unit for the first time, try to give yourself at least (= a minimum of) half an hour or forty-five minutes; if you are revising (= looking through a unit a second or third time), five or ten minutes each time is very useful. So, plan longer periods for new units, and shorter periods for revision.

Working through the book

Do different things to maintain your interest.(= keep your interest high). For example:

• Don’t work through the units in sequence (= in the order they appear in the book): look through the units and choose ones that interest you.
• When you do a unit, you can:
read the whole of the left-hand page, then do the exercises.
read part of the left-hand page, then do one or two exercises.
try the exercises first, then use the left-hand page when you have a problem.
• Be active when you are learning. For example:
While you are reading the left-hand page, use a highlighter pen to mark new or interesting vocabulary.
Practise saying the words silently in your head (= without a noise), and also out loud (= making a noise, so it is possible for others to hear), to see if you can pronounce them.
Put new words in your own notebook using some of the ideas from Unit 2 to do it effectively. (If something is effective, it works well and produces good results.)

Revision

It is common to learn a word one day, then find you cannot remember it a day later. If you revise regularly (just for short periods), it helps you to remember words and make them part of your ‘active’ vocabulary. Here are some ideas for revising with this book.

• Do exercises in pencil. Check your answers when you have finished, then rub them out (= remove them using a rubber/eraser). Later, come back and do the exercises again, and just use the left-hand page if you cannot remember something.

• When you read a left-hand page for a second time, have a piece of card with you. When you reach a new word in bold which has a definition/explanation after it in brackets ( ), cover the definition quickly and try to say what it is. Then uncover it to see if you were right.

• Revise for short periods but do it often. Five minutes a day is probably better than half an hour a week; but half an hour a week is probably better than two hours a month.

• As with learning, be active when you revise. Look for different ways to revise: test yourself, create games for yourself; set goals/targets (= decide on things you want to be able to do by a particular time); decide when to work on something, e.g. meaning on Sunday, pronunciation on Monday, etc.