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Thankyou for your answers
Your answers tell me two things:|
1. You are not learning vocabulary as a "language learning" exercise, you are learning vocabulary as a memorisation exercise.
A list of English words with their Chinese "translations" (often incorrect) is not a language learning exercise. A list like that actually FORCES you to think in Chinese!
In the early days of learning Chinese I had a fudao laoshi who would do the same thing. Whenever I had difficulty remembering a word in Chinese she would simply say the English translation - and BANG! - my mind would switch over to English - I would translate the whole sentence into English including the new word, and then translate back into Chinese to answer her.
She was actually forcing me to think in English! And my Chinese was getting no better.
I changed to another tutor who would painfully, slowly, explain each new word to me in Chinese. So I was learning new Chinese IN Chinese! And my Chinese started to get better quickly.
This is the way to learn language. A list of vocab words with the Chinese translation simply forces you to think in Chinese - which is the opposite of what you should be doing.
2. It's great that you enjoy reading - that makes what I am about to say to you easy for you to do.
Read all the time. Always carry an English book with you, and read it every time you have a break. On the subway. On the bus. Eating food. Read all the time. Buy a dictionary that is ALL English. When you find a word you don't understand - try to guess the meaning from the context. and keep going. But if you REALLY can't guess what it means, then make a note, and at the end of the day look it up in your English dictionary.
Just by reading your posts above, I know that your English is good enough to do what I suggest. So read novels, articles, magazines, non-fiction. Anything that you enjoy.
It will be hard - and it will not FEEL like real study, because you are not memorising big lists - but trust me, your English will improve.
I know many students who have followed this method, and their English is generally much better than students who use the "memorisation" method.
Language cannot be memorised! Language is alive. Language is like a love affair. Language reinforces language - so the less "chinese translations" you read, the more your English will help ITSELF to improve.
The amazing thing about learning new words in English - is that you don't forget them!
And of course, as much as possible, you should try to speak English with native speakers. There are many ways to do this - limited only by your imagination.
Finally, have fun, and good luck!