The method of using cards for long-term memorizing of the Leitner system

The new age of computer technology provides people with unlimited access to information. However, information resources become available not for each user. Some of the information is presented in foreign languages. And a person just needs to know one or two world languages ​​for work.

Most people start thinking about language education, already being involved in the information sphere, and then you just need to gain time. Two components are important in the study of a foreign language - the memorizing of new words and the expansion of a foreign lexicon. An effective way to achieve this goal can be the Leitner system.

Creating a Leitner System

German scientist Ebbingauz conducted experiments in the field of psychology. He observed human perception and memory. He discovered such things as “rule 7”, the illusion of the moon (the moon appears bigger during the sunrise than when it is high in the sky).

One of his discoveries was that, when you forget, a person’s memory loses 75% of all the learned information in a day or two (48 hours). Within 20 minutes after classes with foreign words, 42% is forgotten. And after 8 days only 20% of the initial information remains in memory, but this small percentage allows a person not to forget all the information you learned and it is the key to erased knowledge.

Another scientist, Sebastian Leitner, studied the work of Ebbingauz and concluded that memory does not store information with the same degree of forgetting. Something is remembered easier, something is more complicated. On the basis of this conclusion, Leitner developed a flash card system for effective learning of foreign words. This method not only reduces the efforts of human memory, but also saves time for learning.

Leitner Method Description

The method consists of repeating foreign words at different intervals depending on the result of the reproduction of the word from memory. The Leitner system involves three boxes for flash cards.

So, these are the cells with the number 1, number 2, number 3:

  • cards with new and difficult to remember foreign words are put in the first cell;
  • the second cell must contain cards that were named incorrectly;
  • and the third cell contains cards with easily reproduced words.

The main method:

1. Flash cards from the first cell should be used once a day.

2. In the second cell you need to put words that do not require frequent repetition, say, with a break of one day.

3. Well-learned words from the first two cells are shifted to the 3rd cell.

4. If the words on the cards from cell 3 are partially forgotten, they should be moved back to the second one.

5. If the words on flash cards from cell 2 are recalled with errors, then they should be moved to cell number 1 and repeated as new ones.

In the card system, you can use not 3 cells, but let's say 5. The frequency of repetition of words in different cells should be different. Psychologists advise that it is optimal to use 3 cells for flash cards.

To learn a foreign language, a phrase in your language is added to an unfamiliar word. For example, "I'm sitting на стуле." Thus, the word is remembered within the context. Each part of speech, which includes a lexical version of a word, can have its own color. For example, the noun is red. Here additional color associations are used.

You can also use cards containing a foreign word and a picture with the corresponding subject.

Leitner system in the world of computer technology

In the modern world of computer technology, there are memorizing programs based on the Leitner method. The program itself calculates the frequency and number of correct and incorrect answers. It uses the indicators “forgetting”, “repetition”, keeps detailed statistics, it “shifts” the cards from one cell to another.

Learning using flashcards can be individual or can be used in classes with a teacher in a group.

Such method greatly reduces the time for learning the language, but it should be remembered that a lot also depends on the efforts of the person. The level of basic knowledge, emotional attitude during the period of study and, most importantly, the regularity of classes matter.


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