This Saturday I am making a presentation on learning vocabulary to a group of high school students. They are coming in to look over some area colleges, and this university asked me to make some kind of presentation. The title is Â簡単な単語の覚え方、Â or in English, "An easy way to learn vocabulary." It isn't exactly an honest title, because it really isn't that easy, remembering vocabulary is just hard work. What is easy, I guess, is that there is a system involved. Rather than remembering random words, focus on really mastering the "most important 2000." That would be the most frequently used 2000 words. You can find gobs of vocabulary stuff at Rob Waring's site, the Second Language Vocabulary Resource Page.
I am also suggesting that students work on building word families from the head words that they find in any word frequency list. In addition to simple lists of words, I am going to point out that collocations may also be useful, not just remembering a word, but the environment where it lives, too. Finally I will discuss extensive reading and listening.
Even though it is only 45 minutes, I feea lotot of pressure going into this. It is important to me of course, but it is also important to the school that I deliver an interesting presentation. We'll see how it goes.