Improving your memory: 6 Minute English


Neil: Hello and welcome to 6 Minute
English, I’m Neil. This is
the programme where in just
six minutes we discuss an interesting
topic and teach some
related English vocabulary.
And joining me to do this is Rob.
Rob: Hello… err sorry Neil, how long did
you say this programme is?
Neil: Six minutes … it’s 6 Minute English, Rob.
Rob: Right. OK. Sorry, what’s
your name again?
Neil: Neil! My name is Neil, Rob. What’s
happened to your memory?!
Rob: Sorry, Neil – too many things on my
mind, it’s affecting my short-term
memory, but what
I can remember is that in this programme
we’re talking about improving
our memory.
Neil: We are and I think you might find it
quite useful! Storing information
is an important
function of our brains and scientists
are always looking at ways to
improve it but also to stop it
deteriorating – or becoming worse.
Rob: Yes, and we all know that memories –
that’s the noun for things
we remember from the
past – are nice to have but also important
for remembering who people are,
where things are kept
and how things look.
Neil: Soon we’ll be discussing a new idea
for improving your memory but not before
I’ve set today’s quiz question.
There are many ways we can improve
our memory but one way
is through the type of food we eat.
According to the BBC Food website,
which type of food
supports good memory function? Is it…
a) eggs, b) spinach, or c) bananas?
Rob: Well, as a kid I was always told that
spinach was good for me – Popeye ate it
to make him strong – so I’ll say b) spinach.
Neil: Well, I’ll have the answer later on.
Now, let’s talk more about
improving our memory.
Memory is the ability to encode, store and
recall information but a number of factors
can affect people’s memory processes
including health, anxiety, mood,
stress and tiredness.
Rob: That’s why, for example, if you’re
taking an exam it’s important
to get a good night’s sleep
and to keep healthy. But Neil, when
you’re revising for an exam, what helps
you to remember facts?
Neil: I tend to write things down again and
again and again and again.
Rob: Well, that’s one way. But people have
different styles to help them remember.
According to the BBC’s iWonder guide,
there are three different styles – visual,
auditory and kinaesthetic,
that’s learning by ‘doing’ and practicing
something over and over again.
That sounds like me.
Neil: But recently, a new study has
come up with a method that could
possibly be the best way to improve your
memory and that’s by drawing.
Daryl O’Connor, who’s Professor
of Psychology at the University of Leeds,
has been speaking about it on
the BBC Radio 4 programme, All
In The Mind. See if you
can work out why…
Daryl O’Connor: The authors certainly
argue that one of the things that
happens by drawing
these particular objects, that it leads to
this increased contextual representation
of the object in one’s mind…
It makes a lot of intuitive sense…
the idea that if you have encoded
something in a greater level of detail,
you’re more likely to remember it…
It’s much stronger than just remembering
writing down the words.
Neil: OK, so let’s try to explain that.
Drawing something leads to increased
contextual representation of the object.
When something is contextual,
it is in the situation where
it usually exists.
Rob: So as you draw something you are
creating a picture in your mind
about what it is, how you use it and
where it is used. I wonder if
this means artists have good memories…
Neil: Maybe. Daryl O’Connor says that
when you draw you are encoding
something in a greater
level of detail, more than you would by
just writing things down.
Encoding is changing
information into a form that can
be stored and later recalled.
Rob: That’s because as you draw,
you’re thinking about different aspects of
the object. He says it makes
intuitive sense – intuitive means it is
‘based on feelings rather than
facts or proof’ – so, you just feel
it is the best thing to do.
Neil: Of course this is just one more way
to improve your memory. I’ve also
heard that doing
crossword puzzles and Sudoku
can help, especially when you’re older.
Rob: Yes, as we get older we can often
have more difficulty retrieving information
from our memory – and people with
Alzheimer’s find it very difficult
to encode information – so any way
to keep our memory working is a good
thing. Basically we need brain training!
Neil: Brain training and eating the right
food, Rob! You might remember that
earlier I asked you, according to
the BBC Food website, which type of food
supports good memory function?
Is it… a) eggs, b) spinach, or c) bananas?
And Rob, you said…
Rob: I do remember and I said b) spinach.
Neil: And that is sort of the wrong answer.
In fact they were all correct – they are all
examples of food that can help support
good memory. Apparently, foods rich in
B vitamins are important as they
provide protection for the brain as we age
and support good memory function.
I think it’s time to change my diet!
Now on to the vocabulary
we looked at in this programme.
Rob: So today we’ve been talking about
our memory – we use our memory
to remember things
and ‘memories’ is the noun for things
we remember from the past.
Neil: Then we discussed a learning style
known as ‘kinaesthetic’, that is learning
by ‘doing’ and
practising something over and over again.
Rob: We heard from Professor
Daryl O’Connor, who talked about
contextual representation – when
something is ‘contextual’,
you see it in the situation
where it usually exists.
Neil: Next we talked about ‘encoding’.
That is changing information
into a form that can
be stored and later recalled.
Rob: And we mentioned ‘intuitive sense’ –
having an intuitive sense means
doing something ‘based
on feelings rather than facts or proof’ – so,
you just feel it is the best thing to do.
Neil: And finally we mentioned
Alzheimer’s – a disease affecting
the brain that makes it
difficult to remember things and
it gets worse as you get older.
Rob: Well, there are lots of new words
to remember there – but that’s all
for this programme.
Neil: Don’t forget to visit us on Facebook,
Twitter, Instagram and YouTube
and our website:
bbclearningenglish.com. Bye for now.
Rob: Goodbye!

100 comments

  1. Please can you put the subtitles in videos to make us can download this videos and listen and seeing the words in subtitle this way will help foreign learnings thanks a lot

  2. To master what BBC learning English YouTube channel teaches us and store any other information , we have to depend on our prior and best learning style , and draw the objects we learn in order to increase their contextual representations in our mind; thus, we can easily remember them .Finally, we can also boost our brain's activity and function by eating eggs ,spinach and bananas.

  3. Brain training – to increase your memory and intelligence;
    Doing a crossword puzzle.
    Playing chess.
    Learning a new language can boost your brainpower!
    Brushing your teeth with the wrong hand.
    Getting dressed in the dark with your eyes shut.
    Eating good diet. According to research, chocolate may enhance your ability to acquire and utilize knowledge.
    Don't get too relaxed, your brain needs constant stimulation!

  4. Neil
    Hello and welcome to 6 Minute English, I'm Neil. This is the programme where in just six minutes we discuss an interesting topic and teach some related English vocabulary. And joining me to do this is Rob. 
    Rob
    Hello… err sorry Neil, how long did you say this programme is? 
    Neil
    Six minutes – it's 6 Minute English, Rob. 
    Rob
    Right. OK. Sorry, what's your name again? 
    Neil
    Neil! My name is Neil. Rob, what has happened to your memory?! 
    Rob
    Sorry, Neil – too many things on my mind, it's affecting my short-term memory, but what I can remember is that in this programme we're talking about improving our memory. 
    Neil
    We are and I think you might find it quite useful! Storing information is an important function of our brains and scientists are always looking at ways to improve it but also to stop it deteriorating – or becoming worse. 
    Rob
    Yes, and we all know that memories – that's the noun word for things we remember from the past – are nice to have but also important for remembering who people are, where things are kept and how things look. 
    Neil
    Soon we'll be discussing a new idea for improving your memory but not before I've set today's quiz question. There are many ways we can improve our memory but one way is through the type of food we eat. According to the BBC Food website, which type of food supports good memory function? Is it…
    a)  eggs
    b)  spinach, or
    c)  bananas? 
    Rob

    Well, as a kid I was always told that spinach was good for me – Popeye ate it to make him strong – so I'll say b) spinach.   
    Neil
    Well, I'll have the answer later on. Now, let's talk more about improving our memory. Memory is the ability to encode, store and recall information but a number of factors can affect people’s memory processes including health, anxiety, mood, stress and tiredness. 
    Rob
    That's why, for example, if you're taking an exam it's important to get a good night's sleep and to keep healthy. But Neil, when you're revising for an exam, what helps you to remember facts? 
    Neil
    I tend to write things down again and again and again and again. 
    Rob
    Well, that's one way. But people have different styles to help them remember. According to the BBC's iWonder guide, there are three different styles – visual, auditory and kinaesthetic, that's learning by ‘doing’ and practicing something over and over again. That sounds like me. 
    Neil
    But recently, a new study has come up with a method that could possibly be the best way to improve your memory and that's by drawing. Daryl O'Connor, who's Professor of Psychology at the University of Leeds, has been speaking about it on the BBC Radio 4 programme, All In The Mind. See if you can work out why… 
    Daryl O'Connor, Professor of Psychology at the University of Leeds
    The authors certainly argue that one of the things that happens by drawing these particular objects, that it leads to this increased contextual representation of the object in one's mind… It makes a lot of intuitive sense – the idea that if you have encoded something in a greater level of detail, you're more likely to remember it… It's much stronger than just remembering writing down the words. 
    Neil

    OK, so let's try to explain that. Drawing something leads to increased contextual representation of the object. When something is contextual, it is in the situation where it usually exists. 
    Rob
    So as you draw something you are creating a picture in your mind about what it is, how you use it and where it is used. I wonder if this means artists have good memories… 
    Neil
    Maybe. Daryl O'Connor says that when you draw you are encoding something in a greater level of detail, more than you would by just writing things down. Encoding is changing information into a form that can be stored and later recalled. 
    Rob
    That's because as you draw, you're thinking about different aspects of the object. He says it makes intuitive sense – intuitive means it is 'based on feelings rather than facts or proof' – so, you just feel it is the best thing to do. 
    Neil
    Of course this is just one more way to improve your memory. I have also heard that doing crossword puzzles and Sudoku can help, especially when you're older. 
    Rob
    Yes, as we get older we can often have more difficulty retrieving information from our memory – and people with Alzheimer’s find it very difficult to encode information – so any way to keep our memory working is a good thing. Basically we need brain training! 
    Neil
    Brain training and eating the right food Rob! You might remember that earlier I asked you, according to the BBC Food website, which type of food supports good memory function? Is it…
    a)  eggs
    b)  spinach, or
    c)  bananas?
    And Rob, you said… 
    Rob
    I do remember and I said b) spinach. 
    Neil
    And that is sort of the wrong answer. In fact they were all correct – they are all examples of food that can help support good memory. Apparently, foods rich in B vitamins are important as they provide protection for the brain as we age and support good memory function. I think it's time to change my diet! Now on to the vocabulary we looked at in this programme. 
    Rob
    So today we've been talking about our memory – we use our memory to remember things and memoriesis the noun for things we remember from the past.  
    Neil
    Then we discussed a learning style known askinaesthetic, that is learning by 'doing' and practising something over and over again. 
    Rob

    We heard from Professor Daryl O'Connor, who talked about contextual representation – when something is contextual, you see it in the situation where it usually exists. 
    Neil
    Next we talked about encoding. Thatis changing information into a form that can be stored and later recalled. 
    Rob
    And we mentioned intuitive sense – having an intuitive sense means doing something 'based on feelings rather than facts or proof' – so, you just feel it is the best thing to do. 
    Neil
    And finally we mentioned Alzheimer’s – a disease affecting the brain that makes it difficult to remember things and it gets worse as you get older. 
    Rob
    Well there are lots of new words to remember there – but that's all for this programme. 
    Neil
    Don't forget to visit us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube and our website bbclearningenglish.com. Bye for now. 
    Rob
    Goodbye!

  5. I want to thank BBC Learning English team for such useful and beneficial information that you give to englishlearners! This incredible programme helped me a lot to improve my level of English, especially listening and speaking skills ❤

  6. What are 3 things good for brain? I just heard banana and spinach. What's first? Thank you for your answers 🙂

  7. You guys are incredibly amazing, the topics, the ideas, your :RP pronunciation, the way you present or teach is quite awesome. Thanks a billion you're doing a great job. God bless y'all.

  8. Hi brother glad to hear. However one problem, you said three style but I caught ( visual, kinesthetic) other one I cann't understand because listening skill is very poor. Anyway please help by let me know, please

  9. BBC Learning English is the most beautiful, complete and amazing place to learn english. Thanks a lot for sharing this excellent content. Cheers from Chile.

  10. BBC learning english is really amazing as it includes all the aspects of learning accurately …
    I am a beginner now…as I have subscribed to this channel only few days ago …but I surely want to learn english perfectly ….and I hope that this channel will help me imbibe tremendous informations and make implicit learning possible for me …😊

  11. BBC has helped me a lot my English is soo rusty now. I finished my English 5 Years ago. But now I had been remebered these days =)..Thank you guys

  12. Is Rotogenflux Methods useful to increase your IQ of 22 points? We've read numerous good stuff about this intelligence boost system.

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