My new vocabulary notebook

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Here’s something I bought in one of Vienna’s many stationery shops: this cute Clairefontaine Vokabelheft, or vocabulary notebook. It’s a small, staplebound book with a vertical line down each page, the idea being that you write your words down one side and translations down on the other. Afterwards, you can cover up each half if you want to quiz yourself.

I’ve always preferred notebooks to individual vocabulary cards — less chance of losing things. Another advantage, at least for me, is that a notebook enables you to organize your words sequentially, as you learn them, which helps you remember the context later on. By reviewing the words that I learned while reading Ingeborg Bachmann‘s story “Simultan,” for instance, I review the progression of the narrative and am reminded of certain scenes. And when I walked through Vienna on Sunday and saw a sign for a “Dolmetscher,” I remembered that it was a word I’d encountered in the story (which is about a translator who’s traveling in Italy).

At any rate, it’s a product we don’t currently carry in the U.S. (foreign language programs aren’t as robust here), but it certainly wouldn’t be hard to make your own with a Basics notebook…

3 thoughts on “My new vocabulary notebook

  1. I used notebooks like those in primary school! Ours was orange and had our school logo on it and definitely wasn’t made of lovely high quality Clairefontaine paper 😉 We had all of our vocabulary and spelling words listed in them. I probably still have mine at home somewhere. One of our toughest words was to spell, “Blanchisseuse”.

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