Wondering how to improve your child’s memory? Here are some fun-filled games which will help sharpen memory.
By Dr Priscilla J S Selvaraj
‘My daughter did study well; but she seems to have forgotten the answers to a couple of questions. If only she had remembered it…,’ – are you a parent who says this often? Well, here are some simple ways to help improve your child’s memory so that she can easily recollect what she studies.
Generally, when it comes to helping improve children’s memory it’s all about memory-boosting foods, memory tricks for study, memory tips for recall, and so on. But, here’s something with a difference – fun memory games. They’re super fun and exciting for all age-groups, and offer quite a few benefits. They help the brain stay alert, improve concentration and increase memory power. On the whole, they aid cognitive development. And, unlike chess and other board games, which take a longer duration to complete, these games can be completed quickly. So, let’s get started. Here’s to fun and some healthy exercise for the brain.
1. Picture recall challenge: Let your child look at a picture (say, a scenery) for 10 seconds. Then, let her recall all the people or objects she saw in the picture and write them down. Once she has completed, check her list with the picture to see how many she was able to recollect.
2. Sorting game: Arrange a set of cards in a particular order facing up. Let your child look at them for a few seconds. Then, shuffle up the cards and ask him to re-arrange in the same order that you had placed them. See how closely the order matches with yours.
3. Poetry fun: Ask your child to memorise a poem. Next, write down the lines of the poem on separate slips of paper. Shuffle them up. Ask your child to re-arrange the lines to get the complete poem.
4. Cacophony time: Audio-tape various sounds (car horn’s blare, sparrow’s chirp, gong of church bells, water gushing from tap, etc.) and play it to your child. Let him listen to it first. Then, once the tape stops playing, let him write down all the sounds that he heard. Check how many he got right.
5. Hide and seek: Place some objects on a table. You can have a wide range - pen, note-book, crayons, bottle, vegetables, bowl, and so on. Ask your child to look at the objects for 30 seconds. Then place a towel over the objects so that she is unable to see them. Now, ask her to write down the names of all the objects she saw on the table.
6. Playing the guide: Take your child on a ride to a place he hasn’t been to yet. As you proceed to the place, ask your child to memorise landmarks. On your way back, ask your child to locate the landmarks and guide you.
7. Word chain: This can serve as a simple party game. Start the game with a sentence – ‘I like ice cream.’ The first child should then say, ‘I like ice cream and bananas.’ The second child should say, ‘I like ice cream, bananas and waffles.’ This should continue with each child adding one more to the list, until one of them forgets some items in the list.
8. Photographic memory: Flip through an old family album with your child. As you look at each photograph, tell her the names of people and how they are related to her. You can narrate humorous anecdotes and interesting incidents as you flip through the pages. Once you’re through, close the album and ask your child some fun questions to help her recall the people you pointed out to her. For example, ‘What’s the name of the grandma who kept searching for her glasses while she was wearing it all along?’
9. Backward spell: Display a list of words to your child on a chart. Let him look at the words for a few seconds. Then roll up the chart. Now let him recollect the words and spell them correctly backwards. For example, for the word station, he will have to spell – N O I T A T S.
10. Matching pairs: Place a deck of playing cards facing down on a table. The task would be to find a pair that matches (for example, two 10s, two 7s, etc.). If the pair doesn’t match, the player will have to put back the cards face down in their respective places. All players should remember where the particular cards have been placed so that when their turn comes they can pick a matching card easily.
Note: All games are suitable for ages 6-18.
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Dr Priscilla J S Selvaraj