Periodic.

This video got me thinking about whether nubs are actually a good way of learning or are they really just intellectual bubble gum? This a lovely way to illustrate an otherwise seemingly mundane fact, but does it help you to remember the information better than if you were to read it?

Most memory techniques seem to rely on visualisation and association in some form, so would videos like this actually help you to learn your periodic table for example?

On the one hand the video gives you an instant set of engaging images and content, but on the other it may actually be too distracting for you to form a strong enough memory of the facts. Notes on a page can be read and re-read easily, at your own speed, not at the speed of the video. And maybe it’s better for you to use your own imagination to visualise a memorable image, than trying to remember someone else’s.

Nubs are a way of presenting information that wasn’t really used when I was trying to remember atomic numbers as teenager, so it’s hard to say whether or not this is something that could help kids learn whilst they’re on the bus home, but I have a feeling it might work for some people. Any thoughts?

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One thought on “Periodic.

  1. This is the sort of thing that would really work for me I think. When it comes to memorising things, I need much more than words, and there is nothing like a bit of colour, sound and movement to embed a piece of information in my mind. I think some people, like myself, look at text more as pieces of imagery than as ‘writing’, especially when it comes to memorising the content. I always remember the size and shape and colour of different chunks of text and how each sentence is spacially related to other sentences. Space, meaning and emotion are also intertwined for me, in terms of how they work on the relative, responsive level, and are crucial to my memorising a piece of text.

    The visual quality of this kinetic typography piece gives it meaning and feeling that you wouldn’t neccessarily get from a textbook or page of plain notes. It also enables you to make connections between its ideas through narrative, which is a very good technique for memorising information, one that is commonly used by those who have an eidetic memory. The use of narrative also allows you to think about the information on a different level, and maybe even helps you to analyse and interpret it. That always wins you a few brownie points in exams!

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