Monday, October 21, 2013

MORE Memory Therapy Task Ideas

 Memory troubles are just the worst!

This post is a continuation of the series of cognitive therapy ideas taken from a student project by Janelle Barrett (who is not a student anymore!).  I know I have posted about memory task ideas here and here in the past.  This post just has more!  These are ideas gathered from several SLPs and students.  Comment and let us know what you do for memory!

(The cat realizes she left something in the oven.)
  • Functional Strategies
    • Associations
    • Chunking
    • Calendars
    • Visual Memory/Mental Imagery
    • Use of Alarms
    • Writing things down in a planner or notebook
    • Daily log
    • Daily checklist
    • Mnemonics
    • Visual reminders
    • Post-its
    • Written instructions to-self
    • Rehearsal
  • Tasks
    • 3 Facts
      • Prospective memory: ask them to initiate telling them to you at a specified time.
      • Have them make up a memory strategy to remember each
    • Word list retention
    • The Simon Game app (there are several variations/apps like this)
    • Recalling 4 categories as they go through a 4x4 categorization matrix
    • The “Help for Memory” book is great
    • Study a picture 1-2 minutes, then recall all they can.  THEN think of a strategy to remember them better and practice again or change pictures
    • Flick Flag app (First we study the flags under the instructions.  I have them come up with a good association strategy for remembering each flag- the more creative the better.  Great for learning to make memory tricks and associations.)
    • Hide 3-4 objects around the room (good for non-verbal patients)
    • Have them remember a hand shake combo (also good for non-verbal patients)
    • Apps with “concentration” game
    • Practice strategies for remembering faces or photo cards
    • Practice strategies for memorizing state abbreviations
    • Chunking word lists (Help for Memory p. 52)
    • Using visualization to remember information (Help for Memory p. 101)
    • Taking notes from material presented out loud (Help for Memory p. 103)
    • Associate visual objects (The Source for Memory Exercises p. 81, 83)
    • Mental Manipulation - read patient 3 words, have pt. say them back in alphabetical/chronological/reverse order (ie. “October, April, February” → “February, April, October”)
    • Visual Memory: Have the patient use a chunking strategy to recall 12 pictures (The Source for Memory Exercises p. 152, 153)
    • Identifying “key” information: Read sentence to patient, have patient identify key words to simplify encoding. (Help for Memory p. 21)
    • Repeat list of 3-6 words, then ask pt. to identify which items have certain attributes (e.g., which are animals, which are the softest, etc.)
    • Cog-log worksheet (more difficult than it's famous sister worksheet- the O-log)
    • WALC 10 workbook is great.
    • Practice using day planner or electronic day planner (calendar app)
    • Alternating card task: I show them one word or picture card (e.g., fork) and then another (e.g., ball) and have them say the previous card (fork).  We continue until they get lost.  I have found that ~11 is typical for my non-impaired co-workers.  Some people can go an even longer time!
    • Mental math with no writing things down
    • Memory Rehabilitation: Integrating Theory and Practice" by Barbara Wilson - See more at:
       Book: "Memory Rehabilitation: Integrating Theory and Practice" by Barbara Wilson.
      "Memory Rehabilitation: Integrating Theory and Practice" by Barbara Wilson - See more at:
Hope you got some new fodder for your sessions tomorrow.  :)   
Don't forget to comment- 
I need some fresh ideas!  
What do you use for working on memory deficits?


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