Saturday, March 6, 2010

Mnemonics - mnem whats?

For the Grown Ups..

What are Mnemonics? It is simply a device which aids in the memory of something. There are many kinds. These can be the key to helping children who find learning a challenge to remember things of importance. Mnemonics can also be acronyms or visual aids.

Our minds search for ways to connect new information to past information. This way we hope to remember data. Information that is not meaningful goes in one ear and out the other! Have you ever noticed that when our minds are threatened by fear or stress that we do not remember details? Helping our children to make learning pleasant and to have fun while remembering is a key to making information stick.
Everyones brain is unique. Mnemonics can really help a child or adult that struggles to remember important data. We can train our minds to remember how to remember. What kind of learner are you? What kind of learner is your child? Visual learners find that retaining facts is easiest when they read information, use notes, diagrams and pictures. Auditory learners relate most easily to the spoken word. They will tend to listen to and take notes afterwards. Often written information will have little meaning until they hear it spoken out load. Kinesthetic or multi-sensory learners need to touch, move around and learn skills by imitation and practice.

For the Kids....

Before we can use mnemonics to help us remember spellings and instructions we need to train our memories to work really well. Have a go at this fun game to build up your memory power! Click for memory game
One type of mnemonic is a spelling mnemonic. We can make up silly sentences and use the first letter of each word to spell a word we are trying to remember. This is an example -
Bethany eats cake and usually sucks eggs = Because
Have a go at making up a silly sentence for one of your spelling words this week!

Below is a video of a great song for remembering the colours of the rainbow in the right order. This type of mnemonic is called an acronym and uses music and rhyme to help too!.

They Might Be Giants were a really cool pop band when I was a teenager but now they have decided that writing songs to help kids learn is far more fun!

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