One of the frustrating things about learning a new language is only knowing one way to express a feeling or belief – a limited vocabulary can mean that you’re unable to get your point across easily or simply don’t feel that you can communicate properly.
A good way to expand your vocabulary in English is to learn alternatives for words that you already use a lot, and see whether there is another, more fitting way for you to phrase things. Here are some simple synonyms for everyday words that will help you improve your English vocabulary.
If you would like to find your own alternatives, an online thesaurus is a great place to start. Just put in the words you’d like to use and find other ways of saying them, but make sure you put the word back into a dictionary before using it, as some words are similar but not exactly the same in meaning.
Smart: intelligent, bright, sharp, brainy, clever, wise.
Pretty: beautiful, lovely, gorgeous, attractive, cute, stunning, dazzling.
Big: huge, enormous, large, massive, great, giant, gigantic, colossal.
Little: teeny, tiny, (you can also use teeny-tiny for extremely little), small, compact, minute.
Nice: kind, agreeable, benevolent, warm, gracious, decent, cordial.
Funny: amusing, hilarious, witty, comical, silly, entertaining.
Happy: contented, pleased, cheerful, joyful, jolly, elated, ecstatic, jubilant.
Sad: unhappy, upset, gloomy, miserable, downhearted, dejected, melancholy, morose, glum.
Good: great, pleasant, marvellous, positive, wonderful, amazing, fabulous, agreeable.
Bad: terrible, brutal, nasty, vile, wicked, corrupt, inappropriate, disagreeable.
A simple exercise like this can make a huge impact on how you express yourself in English, both in written and spoken form. Even native English speakers sometimes look up words they’d like to use to find alternatives to make sure that they are correctly expressing themselves or enriching their vocabulary.
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