Memory and the Brain - ?· Memory and the Brain ... • fMRI show that there is increased oxygen use…

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  • Southern Nevada Regional Professional Development

    Saralyn Lasley

    RPDP Secondary Literacy Regional Trainer

    Memory and the Brain

    Learning and memory are synonymous. If you have learned something, the only evidence of that

    learning is memory.

  • Brain Class Mantra There is no without .

    Students make meaning by connecting to existing .

    Neurons that together, together.

    Practice makes permanent!

    learning memory


    fire wire

  • Memory is not a singular place or thing; it is a collection of complex

    electrochemical responses activated through multiple sensory channels and stored in unique and elaborate neural

    networks throughout the brain.

  • Reaction Guide--Memory

    1. Once a memory has been placed in long-term storage that memory will never change.

    2. Much of what we call intelligence is nothing more than a good memory.

    3. The best way to put information into your memory is to keep going over it.

    4. Memory is stored in one area of the brain.

    5. Age has nothing to do with memory.

  • 6. People who appear to have super memory abilities are using some sort of memory trick.

    7. How you feel about something has nothing to do with learning and memory.

    8. If information can stay in our working memories for 24 hours, it will automatically be transferred to long-term memory.

  • We Remember

    Information that aids our survivalWhat we give our attention toWhat we find meaningfulWhat we practiceWhat we link to prior learningWhat we encode with a mnemonic or other memory device

  • We Forget

    That which is insignificant to usWhen we are not engagedWhat we dont practice, review, or useWhen something is too painful to rememberWhen prolonged stress interferesWhen we dont consciously activate a memory cue

  • Memory Types (two ways to classify)

    Duration/life span Manner encoded and retrieved

    Even if we were to figure conservatively that we keep very little in active memory-say one-tenth of 1 percent of whatever we learn in life-it would still mean that our active memories hold several billion

    times more information than a large research computer.

    Morton Hunt

  • Our Brains Information Processing Model--duration

    Sensory or perceptual memory Lasts less than 1 second-long enough to interpret

    a string of images

    Attention to stimulus will allow it to move to short-term memory

    Lasts long enough to dial a # or make change If we say it aloud, we reinforce with auditory and

    time increases

  • Short Term or Working Memory Can hold information for minutes, hours,

    days or even weeks

    Holds data in chunks of 3 and 7 Provides ability to form long-term

    memories but does NOT always do so

    Information must be meaningful, form patterns and connect or it will be lost

  • The Importance of Applying New Learning

    Verbally or physically repeating newly learned material (drill and practice) is a low-cognitive demand process that helps the brain store information in short-term memory.

    To make it stick in long-term memory, the learner must apply the new material in various performance situations.

    When practical applications of a newly learned skill are followed by immediate and frequent feedback, memory is further enhanced.

  • Long Term Memory Can last a lifetime May loose connections through neural

    pruning Memories are altered as they are accessed,

    connect to new learning, and are re-stored.

    Memory is the cabinet of imagination, the treasury of reason, the registry of conscience, and the council chamber of thought. St. Basil

  • Learning & Time The brain is not designed for continuous


    Attention span-1 minute for each year; stops at 20 minutes

    BEM principlebeginning/middle/end Review 10 min 24 hours 7 days 1 month Reflection and frequent, specific feedback

    from various sources minimum every 20 minutes

    Takes sleep for a skill to imprint

  • The Importance of Sleep During sleep, the cortical executive functioning of the

    frontal lobes is less active because of less sensory input.

    This reduced-activity brain state is needed to allow recently learned material to be rehearsed or repeated, sometimes in dreams.

    Because the brain is at rest, it can devote a greater portion of its energy (metabolism) to organizing and filing the memories formed during the day.

    fMRI show that there is increased oxygen use 24 hours after the information is stored.

  • This has led researchers to test and confirm their predictions that increasing sleep time from six or less to eight hours can increase memory and alertness up to 25 percent.

  • Journaling Improves Memory and Cognition

    Writing down information helps the brain organize and make sense of complex information. Intermittent review of these details increases retention, both immediate and long-term.

    Journaling engages the mind and the senses in a creative process of personal storytelling. Writing our way through a problem not only encourages viable solutions to come to the surface naturally, it also helps us take advantage of our inner thoughts and helps us overcome writers block

  • Take two minutes and memorize the following list:



  • We have 5 memory systems

    Semantic MemoryMost academic and professional knowledge

    Ideas, facts, typical exam questions Weakest of our retrieval systems; newly evolved Triggered by language and books Stored in hippocampus Uses working memory, so must be presented in small

    chunks Most difficult of memory lanestakes repetition,

    relevance and sleep Must be stimulated by associations, comparisons, and


  • Episodic Memory (autobiographical, contextual, spatial)

    Driven by location and circumstance Like a film rolling, the occasion comes to life Storytelling Also, stored in hippocampus, but in separate

    part Invisible information students cant solve

    math in English Least reliableover time tends to change

  • Procedural(motor/muscle memory)

    The how of a memory task Riding a bike Automatic Once memory becomes routine, it is

    stored in cerebellum Gives us multitasking

  • Automatic Memory (conditioned response memory)

    Alphabet, multiplication tables, ability to decode

    Once automatic, stored in cerebellum Memories automatically triggered by music,

    smell Flash cards, singing, signing Automatic memory often triggers other

    memory pathsSmell is potent wizard that transports us across thousands of miles

    and all the years we have livedHelen Keller

  • Emotional Memory Takes precedence over any other kind of memory neural hijacking Can release the hormone, cortisol Stored in the amygdalathe amygdalas repsonse

    always matters!

    All but emotional memory must be stimulated by an outside force.

  • What we remember most 90% teaching others 75% practicing and doing 50% discussion 30% watching a demonstration 20% audio and visuals 10% reading 5% lecture 1% worksheet Visuals increase memory 4Xs (400%)

    Think of your preferred mode of instruction. How much do your students remember?

  • Synesthesia The more sensory experience we incorporate into our

    memories, the more likely we are to remember.

    Luria, a Russian, spent 30 years studying a man named Shereshevskii who consistently exhibited perfect recall over long periods (several years).

    In addition to having amazing visualization skills, he was also adept in synesthesia-the ability to express a memory generated in one sense in terms of another.

    S. described a tone with a pitch of 2,000 cycles per second as looking like a pink-red hue, The strip of color feels rough and unpleasant, and it has an ugly tasterather like that of a briny pickle.

  • Stop! What are you thinking?

    Do you have any questions?

    Has your thinking changed?

    Are you confused?

  • Memories can be.

    Explicit (declarative)-meaning achieved through purpose and effort

    Semantic and episodic Learning how to spell Solving a math problem Remembering stories

    Most learning in school is explicit

  • Implicit (non-declarative)-organically, automatically or indirect

    Procedural, emotional and automatic (stimulus response)

    Some memories begin as explicit but through repetition become implicit.

    Driving a car Knowing fire burns Primal memories; they keep us safe!

    How do you remember best? Which memory system is your strongest? Which one is your weakest? Has your memory changed over time?

  • It is impossible even to think without a mental picture

    Memory or remembering is a state induced by metal images.


  • I shut my eyes in order to see.Paul Gauguin

    Are the buttonholes on a mans shirt horizontal or vertical?

    In which hand is the Statue of Libertys torch? Which way does water flow down the drain,

    counter or clockwise?

    Which way do fans rotate? Which way is Lincoln facing on a penny? How many curves are there on a standard


  • Activity: Read the brief fictional story. As a group, label the types of memory involved. The first one is

    done for you.

    Jesse is a