Remembering things through their association with particular pieces of music

  • Music is generally designed to be easy to remember – it is highly patterned and usually very repetitive.
  • At the same time, having no literal meaning of its own, music readily associates itself with other memories.
  • These can be tagged in the mind with strong emotional responses.
  • So encourage parents to use particular pieces of music (perhaps recorded on notable occasions) to trigger the memories that are associated with them: a birthday party, for example, or a holiday or concert.

Using music in memory books

  • Encourage parents to create memory books for particular periods in a child’s life, events or occasions.
  • The books, which may use different media such as braille and the tactile representation of activities, places and people, can also include recordings of sounds including music.
  • Show parents how to make recordings using the small digital devices attached to the book.
  • Suggest to parents that it can be helpful to include an account of the particular significance of a piece of music so that future carers, teachers and therapists can prompt their child to remember things.

Song writing

  • Help the child to make up songs about particularly important or enjoyable occasions.
  • These could be recent or remembered from the past; creating a narrative using words and music may help revive, clarify and fix memories in the mind.
  • Involve family members and friends as seems appropriate.
  • Record the songs to assist with future recollection.