7 Tips for Becoming Less Forgetful

Help your middle schooler build her recall skills, from locker combinations to schedules that can change daily.



  1. Apply alliteration. Does your son practice soccer on Saturday? Don't forget, football is at five o'clock. Is math homework due on Monday? Perhaps the next orthodontist appointment will be in October.
  2. Color-code. Crazy schedule? Make it easier to remember using a calendar with crazy colors. Designate bright colors for different activities, like aqua for swim practice or gold for a cheerleading competition. Or if your child's class schedule changes daily, as is the norm for some middle schools, give each day of the week a color: Monday is the Orange schedule; Tuesday is the Green schedule (and so on).
  3. Get everything else organized. If your child practices good organization techniques, chances are it will be easier for her to remember stuff. Come up with a plan to get her with the program.
  4. Make flash cards. Not only are they a good study aid for almost any subject, but making them gets your child into the habit of writing down information. And just writing something down really helps you remember it!
  5. Pair up. It's okay to get a little help from friends. Have your child find a buddy who has the same classes and exchange phone numbers. (The study-mate needn’t be a close pal — having classes or teachers in common is most important.)
  6. Use repetition. This one is easy: repeat, repeat, repeat. Tell your middle schooler to keep repeating what he needs to know over and over again — either in his head or to the beat of a catchy tune. After all, what's one locker combination when he can recite all the lyrics to dozens of favorite songs?
  7. Write reminders. Sometimes, a good old-fashioned reminder does the trick. Help your middle schooler set his cell phone alarm to buzz when it’s time to call you to check in; stick a post-it on his notebook telling him to bring home the book he needs for a report; drop a note in his lunch when he needs to take medicine with his meal. Soon enough, he'll get so tired of your reminders that he'll start to remember on his own!
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