Using Memory Tools
There are a large number of memory tools that you can use to enhance your short term memory. Listed below are a few of the more common tools.
Acronyms – Use the first letter of each word in a list to form a word (either real or imaginary). For example, you might want to use an acronym to remember the names of the inert gases: Helium, Neon, Argon, Krypton, Xenon, and Radon. One possible acronym would be HANK XR. Acronyms are good for rote memory but not very good for understanding concepts.
Sentences – Use the first letter of each word in a list to form a sentence. For example, if you want to remember the order of precedence in mathematical calculations, you might use the sentence memory aid.
Method of Loci- Associate items you want to remember with a specific path you travel frequently. Each landmark along your path is given the name of one item on your list.
Chunking – Most people can remember up to 7 items at a time. In chunking, you take longer lists of information to remember and you put it into chunks of less than 7 items. That’s what we do with phone numbers and Social Security numbers. We chunk each of these into 2 – 3 digit sequences
Associations – Relate what you are trying to remember with something you are familiar with. For example, you might relate the colors that specific chemicals make in reaction with objects that have the same colors.
You will need to determine which of these tools work best for you..