Thai is a beautiful language with a deep and amazing history. Written Thai was first introduced and used in 1283 by King Ramkamhaeng. If you have decided to travel to Thai, or learn the language for another reason, there are many approaches for accomplishing this goal. One of the methods to be used is focusing on the Thai vocabulary through flashcards and an emphasis on the many compound words.
Looking closely at the language, you will see that most all of the words are actually compound words. If you have forgotten way back in elementary school when you learned what a compound word is, let me refresh your memory. It is two or more words working together to create one definition or meaning such as airport or mother-in-law. The words can be constructed using three methods: a space between the words such as with the word high school, a hyphen structure such as with the word father-in-law, or words simply squished together with no hyphen or space such with as the word homework.
These compound features make it so that you are learning three or more words with every one word mastered. For example, the Thai compound word for airport is sanaam bin. When you learn this word, you are actually also learning the words for air and port respectively, not just the term airport. There are many compound words such as gang han (windmill), dtuu yaa (medicine cabinet), pha sohm saaem (to add in), and dtawng mai (must not) in the Thai language.
What this means is that for each compound word you learn, you are learning two to three other stand alone words. This compound focus process speeds up your learning process. Just make sure that you know which word means which definition. The words are not always exact in sequence.
If you want to focus strictly on the vocabulary and compound word way of learning, there are many flash card type tools to be found. You can order or purchase from a language store some actual hard copy cards at look at them during your downtime, or you can implement one of the many online flash card sites. Some of these are free and some of them charge. For the charged cards, make sure to read the print before you give any payment. Some of these groups charge by the time that you use them and others charge a simple upload fee.
If money is an issue, you can make your own vocabulary cards. You can do it the old fashioned, but highly effective way, with note cards and a dictionary, or you can use one of the free electronic making card apps to help you.
It’s in the Cards
You will probably use several methods for the mastery of the Thai language and this is the best thing to do. However, you will want to make sure that vocabulary acquisition with note cards and compound word focus is one of the methods you employ as you learn the language.