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Learn the most common words first

Learn the most common words first

March 18, 2024

English has a massive vocabulary with 250,000 estimated words. However, most English teachers will tell you that knowing the 3,000 most common words of the language will give you an 80 to 90% understanding of English newspapers, books, movies, and conversations. In addition, with this vocabulary size, you'll quickly learn from context to enrich your vocabulary. The important thing is choosing the right words to know so you gain comprehension speedily and save time.

Learn the most common words first

One of the most effective ways to speed up your English vocabulary learning is to start with the most common words. The words below give you some shortlists to begin with. If you're a beginner, use a dictionary or other online resources to look up the meanings of words you don't know. Paper-based or online flashcards are still one of the most effective ways to learn new words. The most important way to memorize English vocabulary is through regular practice.

Logically learn new vocabulary

Once you've mastered the initial vocabulary lists, you can advance to a more comprehensive one. Keep in mind a native English speaker typically uses around 20,000 words. However, learning just 3,000 words from the correct list can equip you to understand most everyday English conversation and writing. The lists provided are based on word frequency, ensuring you won't encounter vocabulary like 'tiger', 'skirt', or 'spaghetti', which are common in beginner English lists but not particularly useful. By focusing on memorizing the most common vocabulary, you can accelerate your English learning and make it more efficient.


100 most common words in English

This list of the 100 most common vocabulary words in English can be used as a reference for beginner English students. It's a good idea to study these words thoroughly before trying to move on to less common words since this is the vocabulary you will encounter most often. These are some of the first words that native English-speaking children learn how to spell. You can also make sure that you not only recognize these words and know how to pronounce them but that you can also spell them correctly. Mistakes in spelling these short, common words are more significant than mistakes in spelling more complicated words you may learn later on.

a, about, all, also, and, as, at, be, because, but, by, can, come, could, day, do, even, find, first, for, from, get, give, go, have, he, her, here, him, his, how, i, if, in, into, it, its, just, know, like, look, make, man, many, me, more, my, new, no, not, now, of, on, one, only, or, other, our, out, people, say, see, she, so, some, take, tell, than, that, the, their, them, then, there, these, they, thing, think, this, those, time, to, two, up, use, very, want, way, we, well, what, when, which, who, will, with, would, year, you, your


50 most common nouns in English

This is a list of the 50 most frequently used nouns in written English. Learning to use these nouns is a good starting place for any beginner English learner who wants to build up his English vocabulary. Nouns give you a concrete way to talk about the people, places, and things around you. However, too many English learners focus on memorizing long lists of nouns in the beginning. It's easy to get carried away, learning the names of all the animals at the zoo, all the tools in your toolbox, or all the types of clothing in your closet. While you may eventually learn all those nouns, mastering a shorter, more targeted list is a better use of your time. You can always look up more precise nouns as you need them. After all, how often do you need to talk about platform shoes or ferrets?

area, book, business, case, child, company, country, day, eye, fact, family, government, group, hand, home, job, life, lot, man, money, month, mother, mr, night, number, part, people, place, point, problem, program, question, right, room, school, state, story, student, study, system, thing, time, water, way, week, woman, word, work, world, year


50 most common verbs in English

This list gives the 50 most frequent verbs in English in alphabetical order. Understanding how to use these verbs is a high priority for any English learner. Mastering verbs is a cornerstone of a strong English vocabulary because it allows you to describe actions and states of being. Verbs are powerful vocabulary words because they can be conjugated to discuss the past or the future, hypothetical situations or possibilities. Even with just 50 common verbs in your toolbox, as well as some other types of words, you can communicate many things in English.

ask, be, become, begin, call, can, come, could, do, feel, find, get, give, go, have, hear, help, keep, know, leave, let, like, live, look, make, may, mean, might, move, need, play, put, run, say, see, seem, should, show, start, take, talk, tell, think, try, turn, use, want, will, work, would


50 most common adjectives in English

This list of the 50 most frequently used adjectives in English is a good place to start expanding your English vocabulary. Adjectives add precision to your language skills, but you don't necessarily need to have an enormous collection right from the start. The adjectives in this list are enough to get by with for many simple English tasks.

able, bad, best, better, big, black, certain, clear, different, early, easy, economic, federal, free, full, good, great, hard, high, human, important, international, large, late, little, local, long, low, major, military, national, new, old, only, other, political, possible, public, real, recent, right, small, social, special, strong, sure, true, white, whole, young



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