Mnemonics & Memory Tricks

By: Alyssa Robey

Why I Chose to Learn About Mnemonics

The brain has so many hidden secrets that the human eye cannot detect alone. Within the brain we find that everything we have ever learned or done is stored inside it. Although, sometimes remembering certain information can become quite difficult, seeing as the brain is already packed with knowledge. This is where Mnemonic & Memory tricks come into play, as they help us build methods of retaining information easier. With the knowledge of what a mnemonic device is i am able to expand my memory capability .

What is Mnemonic Device?

According to Dennis Congo, "mnemonics are memory deceives that help learners recall larger pieces of information, especially in the form of lists like characteristics, steps, stages, parts, phases, etc" (Congo, University of Central Florida).

The Research & Psycologist

In 1917 Gerald R. Miller presented a study that showed modern day society that mnemonics increased recall. With his study he discovered that students who regularly use Mnemonics increased test score up to 70%. There are 9 basic types of mnemonics; Music, Name, expression/word, Model, Ode/rhyme, note organization, image, connection, and spelling mnemonics.

Musical Mnemonics & Name Mnemonics

A Musical mnemonic deceive is used to remember a long list, and this device tends to work best with younger children because of the catchy and possibly well known rhythm.

EX: at a young age children are taught the states in alphabetical order by learning the '50 Nifty United States' song.

Name Mnemonics is a method where, you take the first letter of each word in a list of items and arrange them to make a name of a person or thing.

EX: R.O.Y. G. B.I.V= colors of the rainbow (Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo, Violet)

Expression/Word & Model

An Expression mnemonic device is the most popularly used method. This devices involves taking the first letter of each word within a list and arranging them to represent a phrase.

EX: 7 coordinating conjunctions (For, And, Nor,But, Or, Yet, So = F.A.N.B.O.Y.S)

Model mnemonic is a drawn out representation for one to be able to look at.

EX: A circular sequence , pyramid of different levels (food pyramid), or even a pie chart

Rhyme & Note Organization

Rhyme mnemonics puts information in the form of a poem

EX: In 1942, Columbus sailed the ocean blue

Note Organization is physically organizing the ideas in your brain by putting them on note cards or creating an outline.

Image & Connection

image mnemonics allow the brain to create a mental picture that is associate with a phrase or word

EX: A mental picture of a star might help you remember the definition of the word 'scintillating' because it means shinning and dazzling, much like how we picture a star.

Connection mnemonics involving using the connection to something already well known, in order to remember the information.

EX: loNgitude runs North to south

Spelling Mnemonics

This mnemonic device involves remembering how to spell a certain word by using certain parts of the word to give you clues

EX:A principal at a school is your pal, and a principle you believe or follow is a rule.

Whats Going on in the Brain?

Increased activity in the occipito-parietal cortex and left retroplenial cortex is shown when using mnemonics, brain regions associated with spatial mental visualization. Extensive use of mnemonics dramatically enhances recall in both young and old adults, suggesting that even later in life the human brain retains enough.