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An excellent, and well-known, form of memorization is word association. Years ago, I was trying to remember the city where my son’s girlfriend (now my daughter-in-law) lived. He said, “Buckley. You know, like ‘belt buckle’”. He then grinned and said, “It’s a very advanced and complicated technique called mnemonics. I can teach you some time if you like.” Yes, he was being sarcastic.
Interestingly enough, even though our Times Tales is based on mnemonics, I often forget to take advantage of using them in my day-to-day life. This is a skill that will greatly benefit our children (and ourselves!) if we learn to take advantage of it.
For example, let’s say I want to remember the meaning of the word “anthrophobia”. Since it means “fear of people” I would mentally visualize the word as “aunt throw people out” (since she’s afraid of them). Whenever I hear “anthro” (aunt throw) I immediately recall a fear of people.
For “claustrophobia” (fear of enclosed spaces) I would think of being in a closet, or “closet-phobia”, immediately bringing to mind an enclosed space.
Pictures also work well, as in the above example of a belt buckle for “Buckley”.
The next time your child is faced with a list of vocabulary words, take time to sit down together and brainstorm some word associations. If you make this a natural part of his memorization process you will be gifting him with a valuable life skill.
Or…if you need to remember a coffee order, try this!