The oldest and most powerful forms of mnemonic are the loci method. Loci derived from the word “location”, is a technique where a person can visualize a familiar place with rooms, imagine walking through each room, then imagine that each item to be remembered is placed one per room. Each time you need to remember the items, imagine walking through the rooms and seeing each item, that way you can recall each item by linking them to the rooms.
There is also the Keyword method of mnemonics, used in learning instances such as with teaching a foreign language. Sound alike words along with images are used in this method. New information is linked to a keyword already encoded in memory, e.g. for the word “catatonic” the keyword “cat” can be used along with a picture of a bored looking cat looking at a bottle of tonic.
In one of the countries that I’ve visited in my travels, there is a famous Rum Punch said to be one of the oldest in the world. The recipe was often remembered by reciting this rhyme “One of Sour, Two of sweet, three of strong, Four of weak” Meaning (one sour) one part of lime juice, (two of sweet) two parts sweetener, (three of strong) three parts rum (preferably Barbadian rum) and (four of weak) four parts water. Then add a couple dashes of Angostura’s bitters and nutmeg if you so desire. Since my family was in the restaurant business most of my life, this came in handy for any one of us who had the job of bartender for the day.
In my Math class where I have to learn the order of calculation within brackets, I can use the following mnemonics “Be My Darling And Stay” to represent (Brackets, Multiplications, Divisions, Additions, Subtraction.) Which tells me I have to calculated anything within Brackets first, then calculate using this sequence, multiply, then divide, then add, then subtract. This helps me tremendously because these are words associated with symbols and a sequence and I seem to be able to remember and apply this technique with no problem. However, I found that when I tried to apply the same method in this psychology class, where I found several opportunities for the use of mnemonics but upon trying to use the Acrostic, rhyming sentence or story method, maybe because some of the words were long and unfamiliar to me and some were double words it was not easy for me to use any of these techniques. I tried to create a rhyme, however, I found it to be very difficult because now I not only had to remember the word, but I now had to think of other words that rhyme with it in order to create a rhyme that made sense to me and that I could relate to, so this was double work for me. For instance in trying to remember the seven contemporary approaches to Psychology “behavioral, psychodynamic, cognitive, behavioral neuroscience, socio-culture and humanistic or positivist because the letters BP, C, BN, S, H did not form a word and I could not think of a rhyme that related to those words.
Studies show that there are three types of memory. Sensory, short term and long-term memory. Sensory registers hold the information gathered from the external stimuli just long enough for the sensory memory to process the information, no conscious attention is