What is mnemonic?

mne·mon·ic  (nĭ-mŏn′ĭk)  

noun:  A device, such as a formula or rhyme, used as an aid in remembering

Using mnemonics, sort of a “memory trick”, is good if you like learning with picture words, rhymes, etc. Once you have learned the word, you won’t need the “memory trick”!


Because the brain never forgets a picture, this makes the ‘remembering process’ a whole lot easier.

Some words are abstract and hard to visualize.  A good example is the Spanish word ir which means “to go”.  Ir is pronounced like the English word “ear”.  This funny picture can help you visualize the concept of “to go” = ir.

Spanish verb ir sounds like English word “ear”.

ir = “to go”

Ear running — Stock Photo ...



Bella’s “phonetic” system to help with pronunciation; click on image to enlarge

Week 6 555 Bella Sample

Learning tip:  Spanish student and my granddaughter, Bella, discovered a way to help herself remember pronunciation of Spanish words using her own phonetic “interpretations”.   She started doing this on her own.  Yes, she has me at home to help if she gets stuck, but the phonetic spelling is entirely her own.  She makes up the phonetic sounds/spelling as she “hears” the word to help her remember how to pronounce it later.  Above is a sample of her work.  Maybe you would like to do this for yourself?  Here are some points to consider that I found on yourdictionary.com website:

  • Sounding out words aids learning because it ties the words to muscle memory. As your mouth moves to sound out a word, your muscles are learning those words as much as your brain is learning the word.
  • Writing down words to sound out becomes a mnemonic device. By writing words over and over again you increase your ability to remember the word.
  • Constantly rereading and pronouncing the word helps you concentrate on pronunciation.

Many people are afraid of using new words because they think that they won’t be able to bear the embarrassment of mispronouncing something. Almost everyone has encountered the discomfort of having one’s pronunciation corrected.

By writing down the pronunciation in your own phonetic spelling dictionary, your risk of mispronunciation drops considerably, and your confidence might rise as a consequence.  

Solo hazlo!  Just do it!  🙂