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Use Your Best Mnemonics
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This memory system is interesting for its insight into the role of visual association.
The idea allows you to remember a list of unrelated items in correct sequence. The first step is to create the `pegs'. These have to be committed to memory by sub vocalising. Because the objects rhyme with the numbers they are easy to memorise.
one = bun
two = shoe
three = tree
four = door
five = hive
six = sticks
seven = heaven
eight = plate
nine = wine
ten = hen
Having memorised the peg words, the next step is to relate visually the items-to-be-remembered with the correct peg word.
Supposing the second item on your list is a car. The instruction is to form a strong visual image of the car and the shoe and get that image to interact as strongly as possible. For instance, a Rolls Royce car might be parked right on top of a giant canvas shoe.
The third item to remember might be a clock. You might visualise a fruit tree growing alarm clocks instead of fruit. As you walked along you bumped your head on the alarm clock and it started to ring. This is a good interactive image because it brings in several senses. Experts in the mnemonic system stress that the more outstanding you make the image the better. It should be unusual, bizarre (remember Von Restorff-) humorous. Additionally since the mental image is entirely a private affair, you will find vulgar or sexual images make strong associations! That is because they involve the maximum number of senses.
Most readers will be familiar with the peg word memory system so we will not belabour the point. However, the principle behind the system is of the utmost importance. It involves creating a highly visual association between two ideas, or words or objects. The more interactive the association the better.
There are three key words in this definition of strong memory. Visual, Association and Interactive. They each bear examination.
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