Do You Remember These Mnemonics From School?

By: Allison Lips

Do You Remember These Mnemonics From School?
Image: Squaredpixels / E+ / Getty Images

About This Quiz

Mnemonic devices are used to help memorize concepts. They rely on information already stored in long-term memory to make recall easier. While your teachers may have created new mnemonics to help their students memorize important concepts for test, the practice of memorizing mnemonics to assist in learning is not new.

Early mnemonic devices were used in Ancient Greece. The word itself comes from Ancient Greek and is named after Mnemosyne, who was the goddess of memory. The use of mnemonics as a learning tool was so popular that Plato and Aristotle both mentioned it in their writings. 

Mnemonics can take many forms. Some are catchy phrases, others are words that have each letter represent a different word. In some cases, it may be easier to memorize a funny or unusual sentence than try to force a word. If you use the method of loci, you visualize a place and use your spatial memory to recall places or objects. 

Were you an excellent student? Do you still remember mnemonics to this day? Have you learned to apply them to other aspects of your life? Has your doctor taught you a few health-related ones so that you don't spread disease or you can help save a life? Test your memory of memory aids with this quiz! 


While it's true that All Cows Eat Grass, you're more likely to hear that phrase in music than biology because it's a mnemonic for which musical aspect?
Spaces on a treble staff
Spaces on a Bass Staff
"All Cows Eat Grass" is used to remember the four spaces of the bass clef from bottom to top. Another mnemonic used is "All Cars Eat Gas."
Time signatures
Strings on a ukulele

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In science class, you had to memorize ROY G. BIV to learn the colors of what?
The rainbow
Roy G. Biv, in order, stands for red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet. Some children memorize this colors with "Richard Of York Gave Battle In Vain."
A color wheel
Primary colors
A crayon box

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What did the mneumonic HOMES teach you in geography class?
The continents
The oceans
The Great Lakes
In order, the lakes of HOMES are Huron, Ontario, Michigan, Erie, and Superior. If you need to memorize the great lakes from largest to smallest, you can use "Super Heroes Must Eat Oats."
The Australian states

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Your music teacher may talk a lot about FACE, but that's only because they are teaching you what?
Time signatures
Spaces on a treble staff
"FACE" are the spaces on a treble staff from top to bottom. Another musical mnemonic is "Father Christmas Gave Dad An Electric Blanket," which is the order of sharps in key signature notation.
Spaces on a bass staff
Order of black keys on a piano

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If you run into FAN BOYS at school, you're not running into huge fans of a pop star. What are you actually learning?
The spaces on a bass staff
The Seven Conjunctions
The FAN BOYS are: for, and, nor, but, or, yet, so. However, the mnemonic only covers coordinating conjugations. The other types of conjugations are subordinating and correlative.
The planets
Order of operations

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While some math students memorized this with PEMDAS, others may have opted for Please Excuse My Dear Aunt Sally. What does this mnemonic help with?
Order of Operations
PEMDAS stands for parenthesis, exponents, multiplication, division, addition, and subtraction. While you may have this memorized, not all calculators are programmed to follow the order of operations, so make sure you are using proper notation.
Steps of Long Division
The Quadratic Formula
Trigonometric functions

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While it's unlikely that King Henry Died Drinking Chocolate Milk, this phrase does help students memorize what?
Continents
Planets
Metric System Prefixes in Value Order
"King Henry Died Drinking Chocolate Milk" represents the metric prefixes in descending order. Starting from King for kilo-, the prefixes are kilo-, hecto-, deca-, deci-, centi-, and milli. Between deci- and deka-, there is the units place, which is not present in this mnemonic.
Lines on a treble staff

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If you're told that Two Old Angels skipped Over Heaven Carrying Ancient Harps, what is your math teacher trying to get you to memorize?
A linear equation
Steps of long division
Order of Operations
Trigonometry Formulas
In "Two Old Angels Skipped Over Heaven Carrying Ancient Harps," o is for opposite, a is for adjacent, and h is for hypotenuse. This means that Tangent= opposite/adjacent, sine= opposite/hypotenuse, and cosine = adjacent/hypotenuse.

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In music class Every Good Boy Does Fine, but what does that mnemonic help you remember?
Lines on a treble staff
"Every Good Boy Does Fine" gives you E, G, B, D, F. Those are the lines of a treble cleft from bottom to top.
Lines on a bass staff
Time Signatures
Bass strings

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Why would your music teacher assure you that Good Boys Do Fine Always?
To teach you time signatures
To teach you the lines on a bass staff
"Good Boys Do Fine Always" is music mnemonic that goes from bottom to top. On the bass staff, you will go G, B, D, F, A.
To teach you the strings on a violin
To teach you the notes on a trumpet

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Why might you save someone's life with the mnemonic act FAST?
It's how to do CPR.
It's how to use a defibrillator.
It's the signs of a stroke.
When you suspect someone's having a stroke, you need to Act FAST. In order of things to check: face, arms, speech, and time.
It's how to use an Epipen.

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If you're over 18, you probably learned the mnemonic for this as My Very Eager Mother Just Served Us Nine Pizzas. Otherwise, you learned it as "My Very Excited Mother Just Served Us Nachos." What are we talking about?
Cell life cycle
Order of operations
The food groups
The planets
The discrepancy in this mnemonic is because some people learned it before Pluto was demoted to dwarf planet status. In order, the planets are Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune.

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While PG Jail sounds like a place to send children, it's actually a mnemonic used to remember what type of science tools?
Simple Machines
A simple machine has few moving parts and are used to adjust motion and force to do work. The simple machines are pulley, gear, jackscrew, axel and wheel, inclined plane, and lever.
Types of beaker
How to properly use a Bunsen burner
The steps for mixing acids and bases

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If you have trouble spelling, why might you remember that "A principal is your PAL?"
You have trouble with the difference between principal and principle.
This mnemonic works because principal ends in pal and principle ends in "le". A principal is the head of a school. Principle is a rule or doctrine.
You are compiling a list of words that end in pal.
The teacher tells you so.
You like your principal.

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Why might you memorize "Pretty Dolls Rarely Ever Punch Criminals?"
You need to remember types of punctuation.
You need to know the planets.
You need help remembering the writing process.
While Pretty Dolls Rarely Ever Punch Criminals is an odd sentence, it can be helpful with the writing process. In order, the writing process is pre-write, draft, revise, edit, publish, and celebrate.
You were training Barbie on how to fight the Hamburgler.

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Why would your biology teacher introduce you to Mrs. Gren?
To teach you the different body systems.
To teach you important organs.
To teach you the processes that define living things.
MRS GREN refers to the 7 conditions that something must have to be considered a living being. They are movement, respiration, sensitivity, growth, reproduction, excretion, and nutrition.
She's their replacement.

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While its unlikely that Dear King Philip Came Over For Soup, you may know this phrase for what reason?
It helps you memorize iambic pentameter.
It's the order of operations.
It's conjunctions.
It's the order of taxa in biology.
The levels of taxonomy are kingdom, phylum, class, order, family, genus, and species. If you don't want King Philip to come over for soup, you may prefer the mnemonic "King Philip Can Order Five Greek Salads."

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Whose wives were "divorced, beheaded, died/ divorced, beheaded, survived?"
Aristotle
Maximilian Robespierre
King Henry VIII
If you want to remember how Henry VIII wives died, you would use divorced, beheaded, died/ divorced, beheaded, survived. However, if you want to memorize their names, you could use "All Boys Should Come Home Please." In order, Henry VIII's wives were Aragon, Boleyn, Seymour, Cleves, Howard, and Parr.
Ronald Reagan

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Why would you have to be reminded that "We hear with our ear?"
You forgot what ears are used for.
You are learning audiology.
You have trouble remembering the difference between here and hear.
We hear with our ear is not the only useful phrase for learning how to spell confusing words. If you have trouble remembering the difference between complement and compliment, you could use that complement makes something complete and compliment puts someone in the limelight.
You are practicing the drums.

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"Theirs is not mine even though 'I' is in it. There is where we'll be. They're is a contraction of 'they are." is used to remember what?
Who owns what.
Where something is.
That it's not all about you.
The spelling differences of their, there, and they're.
Their, there, and they're are homophones. Their is the possessive form of they. There is an adverb and they're is a contraction.

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While it's only true in one sense, "a pint's a pound the world around" is used to remember what?
That they're both 16 oz.
While a pint and a pound are both 16 ounces, a pint is 16 fluid ounces and the other is dry ounces. The former is a measurement of volume, the latter of weight.
That pounds are currency and weight.
That a pint and a pound are the same weight.
That a pint costs the same in every country.

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Why should know the FACTS about your health?
It'll help you know the differences between a cold and the flu.
While a cough can be the sign of the flu or a cold, there is a way to spot the difference before going to the doctor. FACTS stands for fever, aches, chills, tiredness, and sudden onset.
It will help you spot a stroke.
It's the signs of a strep infection.
It will help you deal with allergies.

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What are you remembering with "When the union did survive, 'twas eighteen hundred sixty-five?"
The year Christopher Columbus arrived in North America.
It's the year the United States gained independence.
It's when the Mexican-American War ended.
The year the Civil War ended.
The American Civil War started on April 12, 1861. It ended on April 9, 1865.

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If you spend a lot of time outdoors, why would you memorize "leaflets of three, let it be?"
To identify poison ivy
Poison ivy leaves change color depending on the season. The leaves are reddish in the spring, green in the summer, and yellow, orange, or red in the fall.
To identify a weed
To avoid mosquitos
To avoid shamrocks

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Why do we remember "spring ahead, fall back?"
It tells you when you should be excited or just let things be.
It gives us a clue when to change our clocks for Daylight Saving Time
On March 19, 1918, the United States government passed the Standard Time Act, which established Daylight saving time. In Britain, the same concept is observed as British Summer Time.
It tells you about changes in the TV schedule.
It's instructions on how to use a slinky.

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In European History class, you may hear "No Plan Like Yours to Study History Wisely" to remember the houses of the kings and queens of which country?
France
Great Britain
There were eight royal houses. They are Norman, Plantagenet, Lancaster, York, Tudor, Stuart, Hanover, and Windsor.
Spain
Italy

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In U.S. History, you may have learned that "Large Elephants Jump Slowly And Sink Rapidly." What does it assist in memorization of?
The Amendments
The first few presidents
The Articles of the Consitution
The U.S. Constitution has seven articles. Their topics are the legislative branch, the executive branch, the judicial branch, the statehood, amendments, supremacy, and ratification.
The regions of the United States

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While its true that Lazy Cats Don't Move, the mnemonic is used to remember what?
Roman numerals in order of magnitude
"Lazy Cats Don't Move" can be used to remember that L= 50, C= 100, D= 500, and M= 1,000. If you want to remember then starting from I, you can use "I Value Xylophones Like Cows Dig Milk." This adds I= 5 and V= 10.
Metric prefixes
Conjunctions
Life processes

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RAVEN helps differentiate between which two words?
Affect and effect
Affect is an action, whereas effect is the result. RAVEN stands for "Remember Affect is a Verb, Effect is a Noun."
Addition and subtraction
Before and after
Sine and cosine

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Why might you memorize "Pregnant Camels Often Sit Down Carefully, Perhaps Their Joints Creak? Possibly Early Oiling Might Prevent Permanent Rheumatism?"
You need to remember the U.S. Presidents.
You need to remember the kings and queens of England.
You need to remember the geological periods in order.
If you don't care about camels, you can use "Cows Often Sit Down Carefully. Perhaps Their Joints Creak? Persistent Early Oiling Might Prevent Painful Rheumatism. Regardless of which mnemonic you use, the periods are Cambrian, Ordovician, Silurian, Devonian, Carboniferous, Permian, Triassic, Jurassic, Cretaceous, Paleocene, Eocene, Oligocene, Miocene, Pliocene, Pleistocene, and Recent.
You care about pregnant camels.

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Why might your math teacher make you memorize Five Tomatoes?
It's the number of inches in a yard.
It's the number of millimeters in a meter.
It's the number of days in a month.
It sounds like the number of feet in a mile.
There are 5,280 feet in a mile. In a marathon, there are approximately 26.2 miles.

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What aspect of U.S. government can be remember with "When juries lack honor, justice gets forgotten?"
Common currency denominations
"When juries lack honor, just gets forgotten" stands for Washington, Jefferson, Lincoln, Hamilton, Jackson, Grant, and Franklin. They are on the $1, $2, $5, $10, $20, $50, and $100 bill respectively.
The first few presdients
The branches of goverment
The separation of powers

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Why would you need to know "One big T equals teaspoons three?"
The number of cups in a quart.
It's the number of teaspoons in a tablespoon.
Teaspoons and tablespoons are units of volume. Teaspoon can be abbreviated tsp. or a lowercase t. A tablespoon is abbreviated Tbsp. or uppercase T.
The number of ounces in a pound.
The number of pints in a gallon.

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While it is nonsensical, "Idiotic Penguins Make Antarctica Too Cold" helps students remember what?
The continents
The states of matter
Cell life cycle
You may have come across this mnemonic in biology. It represents interphase, prophase, metaphase, anaphase, telophase, and cytokinesis.
Units of volume

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While Pvt. Tim Hall sounds like someone you'd learn about in history, you're more likely to meet him in which subjects?
Woodshop and art class
Chemistry and biology
Pvt. Tim Hall is used to remember the 7 essential amino acids. The amino acids are phenylanine, valine, threonine, tryptophan, isolucine, histidine, arginine, leucine, and lysine.
English and Creative Writing
Accounting and Calculus

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