Understanding the difference between Short & Long-Term Memory - Part 1
Hello my Darlings for the continuation of How We Remember with the most important step of them all...
THIRD STEP: CONVERTING SHORT-TERM MEMORY INTO LONG-TERM MEMORY
If you haven't read Part 1 you can access it in the "RECENT POSTS" section on the right side of this page.
To understand the difference between the two, have you ever tried holding water in your hands? You can for a short distance...let's say from the faucet to your mouth or even across a room before it leaks through your fingers.
In the same way, when you learn something NEW ... a telephone number, someone's name, a script, a procedure or a vocabulary word it goes into the Short-Term Memory part of your brain...
which holds it for a very BRIEF period of time.
In 1971 Drs. Atikinson and Shiffrin's research found most people can remember up to 7 new items for up to 30 seconds. So just like your ability to hold water in your hands, most new information LEAKS from your memory and isn't converted into Long-Term Memory.
The way to hold water in your hands longer is to TRANSFORM it into a SOLID OBJECT, such as an ice cube. Now you can transport it across town and store it in a freezer to use when needed.
In the same way water is converted into ice, new information can be TRANSFORMED from its initial abstract concept (short-term memory) into something SOLID YOU CAN SEE and HOLD in your MIND'S EYE (long-term memory) so it can be transferred and stored into the Long-Term part of your brain....