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Popular Mnemonics: How Can You Easily Remember Things?

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Author: Sofia PC

It can be quite difficult to remember things, especially the order of things. That is what mnemonics are for. Mnemonics are word structures that help us remember things easily. They can come in the form of, for example, acronyms or songs. “Please Excuse My Dear Aunt Sally” stands for the order you are supposed to solve a math equation: “Parentheses, Exponents, Multiply, Divide, Add, and Subtract.” See how much easier it is to remember the sentence rather than fragments of information? This is how the brain works- it is much each for the brain to remember continuous (and interesting) information rather than fragments of information that has to pertain to the topic.

Problem:

This experiment will teach kids about a fun way they can remember this more efficiently.

Materials:

  • At least six test subjects
  • A pre-made mnemonic on paper
  • A quiet location for testing
  • Stopwatch
  • Pen/paper for notes

Procedure:

Initial Steps

  1. First and foremost, come up with two mnemonics for anything you can think of. It can be your schedule for tomorrow or even the order of evolution. Use your imagination.
  2. You will have two groups of test subjects, one control group and one experimental group. Group them equally, randomly and accordingly.

The Control Group

  1. Hand out one of the lists (without the mnemonic!) to your control group and ask them to remember it to the best of their ability. You should give them five minutes to study the list.
  2. After the five minutes have passed, retrieve the lists and ask your test subjects to resume to their normal tasks or whatever they want to do for one hour.
  3. After one hour, test your first subject. Ask them to recall the list to the best of their ability. They may elect to write this down.
  4. Time how long it takes for them to recall the list and how many they got correct.
  5. Repeat steps 5-6 for the rest of your subjects in the control group.

The Experimental Group

  1. Hand out one of the lists with the mnemonic to your experimental group and ask them to remember it to the best of their ability. You should give them five minutes to study the list.
  2. After the five minutes have passed, retrieve the lists and ask your test subjects to resume to their normal tasks or whatever they want to do for 1 hour.
  3. After one hour, test your first subject. Ask them to recall the list to the best of their ability. They may elect to write this down.
  4. Time how long it takes for them to recall the list and how many they got correct.
  5. Repeat steps 5-6 for the rest of your subjects in the control group.

For Accuracy

  • Repeat the above steps for a second trial with the second mnemonic you created.

Calculations

  1. Calculate the average time it took for both groups and both tests to remember the lists.
  2. Calculate the average number of correct answers there were for both groups and both tests.

 

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