Memory appears to be always changing. There are numerous ways to improve particular skills in memory for example nutrition and mnemonics. Though some aspects of memory may be hard to understand, it is generally believed that memory can be enhanced through nutrition.
The enhancement and development of memory in children continues into adolescence with major developments in short term memory, working memory, long term memory and autobiographical memory.
Declarative memory increases and develops very rapidly throughout the first 2 years of life. An increased attention span, language acquisition and increasing knowledge points towards increase in declarative memory.
Poor working memory skills are relatively common in childhood. Given below is a list of cognitive and behavioural characteristics associated with the learning needs of children affected by this problem of working memory:
- Difficulties in following instructions
- Poor working memory profile
- Reserved in group activities
- Poor academic progress in reading and maths.
- Place-keeping difficulties
- Short attention span
- Gets easily distracted
Remedial measures may include:
- Reducing the amount of material to be remembered
- Increasing the meaningfulness and familiarity of the material
- Restructuring complex tasks
- Repetition, repetition, and more repetitions
- Encouraging the use of memory aids
- Trying to develop a child’s own strategy to memorise.
Familiarity and repetition of an experience can highly influence the organization of information in storage for preschoolers. Knowledge itself will not or may not alter retention performance, rather how well that knowledge is structured will definitely alter performance. Children who experienced an event twice are able to recall the event better maybe 3 months later than did children who only experienced it once.
Developmental disorders may include Down’s syndrome, Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders, learning disabilities, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and acquired brain injury.
Memory impairments in childhood may have negative consequences for the development of language, literacy, social skills and personal relationships. However, interventions during development have the potential to improve memory enhancement and performance and also have positive impacts on related cognitive skills.