Chunking – One of many Memory Strategies

An Interesting Fact about Memory

Did you know that that the average adult can hold approximately seven numbers in short- term memory.  Maybe that’s the reason a phone number is seven numbers!


Chunking is one of many good memory strategies to help your child remember.  This is particularly helpful for recalling numbers.

  • For example which is easier for you to remember (2, 8, 3, 6, 5, 7, 5)- as a list of numbers or chunked (283-6575)?  Try to remember the seven numbers as two groups of three and four digits, not as one group. 
  • Your child can use chunking to remember his phone number, social security number, locker combination, and license plate numbers.
  • Keep in mind that this ability is a developmental task, and a child’s age has to be considered. 

Young children ages 5 to 7 should be expected to retain shorter lists of three to four numbers, while older children, ages 8 and above, could practice on longer lists of five to seven numbers.

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