THE NUMBER-SOUND SYSTEM
Now that you have learned about the history ofmemory, about
the ideas of association, about the Link system, and the first
small Peg system, you are ready to progress to the next small
Peg system and to a few slightly more sophisticated Peg
Because of the knowledge you are building up as you go
along these systems will be introduced without too much
preliminary explanation as the principles already discussed are
common to all of them.
The Number-Sound system is almost identical to the
Number-Shape system except that (and this you may have
already guessed.) we think of nouns or noun-verbs which are
similar in sound to the number.
As in Chapter 3 I am going to list the numbers from 1-10,
leaving a blank beside each number for you to pencil in the
rhyming images which you think are best for each number.
Make sure that the images will be good memory hooks for you.
As an aid, the word which nearly everyone uses for number
5 is 'hive', the images being associated with this varying from
one enormous bumble bee leaving the hive to a sky-covering
swarm of monster bees!
As practice in linking and creative thinking has probably
already improved your mental capacity give yourself not five
minutes as previously, but three minutes tofillin the Number-
Sound memory word list from 1-10.
As before I am going to offer you now a few alternative
suggestions which I would like you to consider, and then
compare and contrast them with your own choices. Having
done this select the Number-Sound memory word which you
consider to be best and print it in the box as you did in the
First then, some possible choices:
Sun, bun, Nun
2. Shoe, pew, loo
4. Door, moor, war
5. Hive, drive, jive
6. Sticks, wicks, pricks
7. Heaven, Devon
8. Gate, bait, weight
9. Vine, line, twine
10. Hen, den, wren
Now select the most appropriate word and enter it in the box.
As in the last chapter, I now want you to test yourself with
four chosen Number-Sound word. Close your eyes and
mentally run through the numbers in order, linking each
number mentally with the Number-Sound memory word you
have selected. Next run through the numbers in reverse order
again linking them with your chosen word, and finally pick
numbersrandomlyandas quickly as you can, linkingas yougo.
Spend about five minutes on this exercise now.
This list can be used in exactly the same way as the Number-
Shape list, although many of you will have already realised
that in a way you already possess the ability to remember 20
objects in and out of sequence!
All you have to do is to establish one of these two Peg
systems as the numbers from 1-10, letting the other represent
the numbers from 11-20.
Let us put this to the test. You will remember (I hope!) that
Chapter 1 contained two tests, each of which asked you to
remember 20 items. The first of these tests could have been
adequately done by using the Link system, but the second was
more difficult and required some form ofPeg memory system.
Let us then apply our present knowledge to the more difficult
of these two tests.
Decide which ofthe two Peg systems is to be first, and which,
second and then give yourself not more than four minutes to
remember the list When your four minutes are up, close or
cover the book and then write down your answers in the same
way as you did in the original test. After you have done this
check your answers against the list. Here it is again:
Score: Number correct
You will almost certainly have made an improvement over
your performance in the original test, but might find that you
are still having difficulty with certain associations. The only
way to overcome this is to practise and practise still more.
Tonight and tomorrow throw yourself in at the deep end,
testing yourself whenever possible, and having as many of
your friends and acquaintances as you can try to catch you out
on lists that they make up for you to remember.
On the first few tries you will probably make a few errors
but even so, you will be performing far beyond the average
person's capacity. If you persevere, you will soon be able to
fire back lists without any hesitation, and without any fear of