Our memory is sensitive to different life situations, emotions, fatigue and stress. When you try to learn some new words the rapidity of memorization depends on your emotional state. It is clear that when you’re tired you can’t learn properly. The same is with the stress. The new words that you try to put in your head will disappear the next day. To understand better let’s see how our memory works.
There is short-term memory and long-term memory. At first, information goes to the working memory (short-term memory) and after a while it goes and remain in the long-term memory.
Any information follows three stages :
1. Encoding. The perception of the information.
2. Consolidation. When the information is engraved in the long-term memory. For example, repeating the words. The more you repeat the better it will be engraved in your long-term memory.
3. Remembering. Recalling information stored in the long-term memory. It’s like to remember the words the next day.
Let’s imagine that you’re learning some new words or a poem by heart. You repeat them a lot of times and you feel like you can pronounce and translate all of your words or you can repeat your poem. Then you’ve met your friend. It is possible that after this discussion you’ll forget some of the words you’ve learnt before. Stress is like your friend, it stands on your way and don’t let you put all of your new words into the long-term memory.
According to research stress blocks chemical reactions in our brain that are necessary for the learning process. When you’re stressed you’re not able to memorize properly. That is why it is important to be relaxed and in a good mood during your learning process. If you feel that it’s not your day or you are moody just do something else. Listen to a music or watch some programs in the language that you learn. Let’s it be an unconscious learning. Teachers should also pay attention to their students and create the atmosphere of friendship on the language classes.
Another thing you should know is repeating. Our brain accepts only useful information, everything else it erase. For example, you’ve learnt ten new words. Today you remember them. The next day you don’t use them, don’t practise. Your brain takes this information as useless and the words fade from your memory. If the first day you remember 100 %, after three weeks you will have just 50 % and in six week you will remember only 20 %. That is why you should repeat information every week, do some cards or write short texts.