Friday, August 9, 2013

{Blog Hop} 5 Days of Memory Work–Day 5


Organizing Memory Work for Middle/ High School

5 days button

I mentioned briefly in my first blog post this week that the idea of grammar-level memory work surrounds us whenever we undertake a new project, hobby, job or vocation.  Each new undertaking requires us to learn new vocabulary and new systems which we then have to integrate into what we know.

Therefore, just because your children grow out of the classical education ‘grammar stage’ does not mean that your child will stop needing to do memory work.  It is still there and still something to be learned, practiced, and reviewed.

My rising high schooler (it just seems so absurd that my first baby is starting high school in a few weeks), Ben, is going to have a HUGE amount of memory work to incorporate into his life this fall.  Here’s some of his subjects:

Introductory and Intermediate Logic
Mock Trial
Literary Analysis
Algebra 1 and Geometry

Some of the memory work won’t necessarily be new to him (he’s been studying Algebra since February) but I will be requiring him to incorporate memory work into his daily routine – things like formulas and math properties will be items that he’ll need to commit to memory more intentionally this next year.  And, although he made flashcards for Spanish, he will definitely be more intentional with it as well.

So let me introduce you to his memory work system:


I’m repurposing this lidded plastic shoe box.  Index cards fit perfectly into it.  I like that the lid is attached. {I’m not so sure this style is made anymore, but I’m sure you can find something similar at Wal-Mart, Target or an office supply store.}


Piles of index cards and rings are necessary.  I ended up fitting about 1000 index cards in this box, with room for rings and markers left over. The rings are to make the cards portable.  I saw at Staples they had a plastic covered set of index cards already hole-punched with a ring for $2, but that had only about 100 cards in it. 

I also found some sturdy tabs on clearance at Staples and I purchased a set of colored index cards.  Ben will these to create subject dividers like the one below:

I also included a set of markers.  Ben will color code his cards either with a dot or line at the top. 
I told him he could sit one night and color code his cards while watching his favorite show on Netflix (Psyche).
I just love this box and how self contained all his supplies are.  A friend of mine whose son was in Challenge A last year spent part of his morning reinforcing his memory work.  She said it worked better for him to review his memory work in one chunk of time before starting his subject than spending the first 5-15 min of each subject’s hour reviewing memory work.

Thanks so much for stopping by to follow my 5 Days of Memory Work.  I am feeling more organized and ready to go for our new year!

Even in you are not involved in a Classical Conversations community, I hope you can tweak some of these ideas to help you get ready for a fantastic school year.

Please click on the link below to read all of our Schoolhouse Crew member’s 5 Days… blog entries!

Summer Blog Hop

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