Chem is killing me

Send help guys , I mangaged to memorize basic facts and somereactons to some extent but when I see stuff like this I have no idea how to convert these to images


Do you actually need to know the reaction of the formation of Nylon 6,6 or is it just an example to illustrate the formation of polyamides?

Otherwise just memorise the bits that interact e.g. the amine group and the carboxyl group to form CO-NH?


I need to memorize each and every reaction, that isn’t hard ,the hard part is the names and the confusion I get and the time it takes to process and make up the images

I actually made up stuff for groups eg Amines is Muslim guy shouting amen! amen!


I thought the names in chemistry were the least problematic part. If you know the chemical formula, you know the structure and vice versa?

Hexamethylenediamine → Hexa methyl ene Di amine

You just need images for all the prefixes and suffixes:

mono, di, tri etc.
meth, eth, prop, but etc.

Adipic acid is also known as hexanedioic acid. Hexa ane Di oic. If you remember the names, you can get the chemical structure. You can remember the names by having an image for each affix.


I don’t know how to link it, but i just posted about my very basic chem with my kid who is in junior chem. I added the elements to my memory palace of countries to test the rule that ‘more is more’, i.e. it should be easier. And it is easier. Each country now acts for its element.
I only wanted to do the elements, but my son is adding to the palace. So the tests that cause white precipitation with silver nitrate (bolsonaro is carbon and a bunch of angry iranian girls are chlorine) now have a silver brush and a pile of dandruff. etc.
I don’t even remember any chem from 1998, but now I can’t forget. This is not your level of chem, but maybe it will give you hope? Nitens idea about the affixes is great. I’m also looking for this type of idea for my students. Very interested in your attempts. Thank you for sharing it.


That is organic , it has an order , I at least have some idea on that subject . When it comes to inorganic names sound like another language.
Many thanks for you help

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Yea for the periodic table I assigned a person and memorized upto 60 then ran out of space, and just left it .
The hardest part is revising these images lol , they just slip out if your mind.
And for organic I assigned people for every functional group
Aldehydes - CHO - Mulan
Ketones - Phones - MarcquesBrownie
Alcohol - OH - Thor from endgame
Ethers- Loki
and for benzene rings I imagine a Mercedes benz
And for mechanisms and reactions I just imagine a war going on , as I watch lot of YouTube videos about war strategies.


Did you learn them by number?

The more I do mnemonics, the more I think that you can’t avoid revision. You will need to go over your material to see if you still remember it. The mnemonics are more like a handrail, for example, if you go into an exam and have a random memory blank.

I remember a book about musicians and it was interesting to see how they would memorise music. As you know, Classical musicians often give their concerts from memory, and these last about an hour long or so.

They first of all have muscle memory, which is acquired through practicing the piece over and over again. But they claim, muscle memory is the first to fail under pressure, so they memorise the same piece in multiple ways e.g. they analyse the structure of the piece, the harmonic progression etc. I feel, that ideally, the best type of memory is natural memory: that has no delay in encoding or decoding. But some things do not stick, that is when you use the Art of Memory.

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The Art of Memory is only a means to an end. If we could remember everything without any strain, we would have no need for it.

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Oh, battle. That’s good.

We are learning them by number. It’s our first memory palace and we are learning them in sets of five, and so I also practice going up and down by 5s as a kind of keyframe. Though the beginnings of the sets also like to stand out so I do those too. We just added 10 more this morning, driving to work/school with my kid on his way to the form 3 chem exam. I seems like the numbers over 20 need some reminders of the number. But it was really easy to add 10 in 20 min. And kid added his own elements to help with the test which is asking some descriptors and tests for the elements.

The point for me (learning them for no reason) is that the revision in a memory palace is pleasurable. At this time of year I have to invigilate (supervise 2 hour exams) and wandering around in a mind palace is a nice way to pass the time with my eyes open and nothing in my hands. I think revision and ritual is in all the books I’ve read.

Yea you were right , I need to work on my revision schedule , I have neglected it in the past . Thanks again for reminding me

For elements, there are 118, which is a lot. So I use PAIL (Person Action Item Location).

My first image is Mr. Hyde inflating a battery with a cold wind. Hydrogen is mr Hyde. Helium is inflating a balloon. The ballon is shaped like a lithium battery. The frozen wind is cold, brrr, so beryllium. One image gives the first 4.

Second is a boar driving a car that is spreading fertilizer and bumping into an oxygen tank. Boron os the boar. Carbon is driving the car. Nitrogen is the primary ingredient in fertilizer. Last is oxygen.

This lets me encode all 118 in 30 images.


This what I was thinking , to make an image for every element was unnecessary but that was many months ago when I first started using these techniques

This is a great thread – thanks to all for the discussion!

I was having a hard time creating a reasonable review schedule for memory palaces, so I put them in an Anki deck and let it prompt and evaluate my review. The loci in my palaces are numbered (sort of like TanyaHart was describing – I use Major System images at the tens and a glowing hand at the fives), so I used the LPCG add-on in Anki to automatically generate “cloze deletion” review notes from the full lists… I had it break them down into groups of ten, and it reminds me by showing me the previous group of ten – e.g., the front of the Anki card will be loci 41 through 50 as a prompt for the back of the card which lists loci 51 through 60…

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