IMG_20150421_190007Paper dictionaries

I have an awesome dictionary collection on my smartphone. I’ve been buying models of this particular brand since I was studying seriously for the Japanese national kanji exam. The dictionaries are in the phone memory, so it’s not necessary to go online.
There is also a drawing function, which helps when looking up tricky characters.
But I still swear by paper dictionaries, and I have a collection ranging from genuinely pocket sized to ones I can use for weight training. Currently I lug around a pocket French-English dictionary.
Electronic dictionaries usually help you find the answer more quickly. You can save words to create vocab lists, share them with your friends and use analytics to predict the hair colour of your future partner.
Paper dictionaries time to look up.
Let’s look up “feuillage”
I find myself repeating the word as I flick through all the words that are NOT “feuillage”: attrait, effroi, fesse, fissure, fêtard, fétiche.
This has two benefits: repetition enforces memorisation, plus I discover bonus words in the process.
After 20 second leafing through, I find it: feuillage !
Oh “foliage”.
Immediately below, I notice related words: feuille, feuilleté, feuilleter.
Bonus learning.
Get the picture?
With an electronic dictionary, the answer is instant, and is often also forgotten immediately.
Language study takes time.
With quick answers, we might not see the forest for the trees.