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The Catch Words Technique can be an effective tool to help you memorize many seemingly unrelated items. The Catch Words Technique connects the unrelated ideas we want to remember in the letters of a word or series of words that relate to each other. We know from recent hemispheric brain research that our brains act as computer file folders, slotting newly learned information in the same file as already-learned information that fits within that same file. This technique connects ideas or items together, just like our brain file folders do. If we take the time to organize new information in same way as our brains, we can improve our retention of that information.

Catch Sentence Examples

Do you remember these catch words from school?

HOMES-for the Great Lakes: Huron, Ontario, Michigan, Erie, and Superior

ROY G. BIV-for the colors of the spectrum: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet

NEWS-for the chief points of the compass: north, east, south, and west


For each key word that you want to remember, use its first letter as one of the letters in a new word. Then select another key word and use its first letter as another one of the letters in the word, etc. Certainly add on additional words as is necessary, but try to relate the words together in a memorable phrase, such as ROY G. BIV in the above example. Substitute concrete objects for any key words that are too abstract to remember well. For example, substituting the concrete nose for the abstract smell would be a much more memorable object to use in the catch word(s).

Let’s try to memorize some facts about for an upcoming history test on World War I. You need to know the causes of the war and the members of the Triple Entente and Central Powers alliances. Simple with the Catch Words Technique.

For the long term causes of World War I: alliances, militarism, nationalism, and imperialism, let’s rearrange this list, using the first letter of each cause in this order: MAIN. For the Triple Entente: England, Russia, and France, let’s rearrange this list as REF. For the Central Powers: Germany, Austria, and Italy, let’s rearrange this list as A GI. Put them together and you’ve got the memorable MAIN REF A GI. Develop a picture of GI-Joe, dressed in a referee uniform, directing traffic on Main Street, and you will never forget these catch words. That’s ten key facts from World War I, organized in three categories!

Now prompt yourself to remember each fact by referring only to the above catch words. Works well, doesn’t it? A little rehearsal will place these facts into your long term memory and help you “ace” that history test.

Memorizing using the Catch Words Technique will enable you to retain the memory of many seemingly unrelated items. Useful for upcoming tests, names, essays, lectures, shopping lists? Easy and very memorable.

Source by Mark Pennington

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