Students' Corner

Improve your memory

Teen girl looking anxious while preparing for exams
Photo: © Ashwin Kharidehal Abhirama / 123RF Stock Photo

It is a matter of common concern for students, teachers and parents on how students can remember their lessons so that they can reproduce properly what they have learnt and score high marks in their exams. Many of us strongly believe that memory means learning by heart.

When I was a schoolboy, my mother took up my lessons. She insisted that I repeat everything from the textbook or notebook, word for word in a parrot-like fashion. If there was a slight mistake, she would squeeze my ears! My friends and I constantly grumbled about this way of learning.

As a judge at many school and college competitions in elocution and debating, I witnessed participants begin with a bang and then suddenly stop because they forgot their lines. You can see the embarrassment on their faces. The same thing can happen when writing exams and valuable time is lost. So if you want to build up a good memory, don’t memorize!

Chandrika is in Std. IX. She can sing old and the latest film songs and wins many antakshari competitions, yet her mother complains that she cannot remember her lessons. Kishore who is in Std. VIII can rattle out the batting statistics of his favourite cricketer to near perfection, but finds it difficult to remember the dates in his history lessons.

Memory depends upon two main factors:

1. Interest: We are determined to remember film songs and cricket statistics because these interest us. We also remember the hates, the hurts and the grudges that we have against people because we are interested in getting even with them in the future.

2. Practice: Chandrika remembers film songs because she sings them again and again. So does Kishore; he reads cricket statistics again and again. So practice does enable us to remember.

Together with interest and practice there is a strong desire to remember things that we like. That’s why we make it a point to remember only those things. So if you want to cultivate a strong memory to remember your lessons, build a positive attitude with the following tips:

  • a. Feel confident about yourself. Trust yourself and your memory, so that you feel good about yourself and begin to read and learn with interest.
  • b. Have a reason for remembering. Nothing happens by chance. There is a cause for every effect. When you want to remember anything, have a strong and genuine reason. This helps you to motivate yourself particularly when there is no support or backing from others.

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Atul John Rego is the author of How To Develop A Pleasing Personality published by Better Yourself Books.

Atul John Rego

Atul John Rego is the author of How To Develop A Pleasing Personality published by Better Yourself Books.