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Creative Ideas for Science Fair Projects -- Remembering Numbers

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Did you know that: "When it comes to remembering numbers, young chimpanzees have outperformed college students (when the numbers stayed on a screen for.4 of a second versus.7 of second". (see references below)

Seeing how many numbers someone can remember is a fun test many have done. This can be turned into a great science fair project for any grade depending on how sophisticated you want to make. There are numerous variables that come to play.

Here are just a few ideas that you can expand on.

--Everyone learns differently and being able to remember numbers by seeing vs. hearing may vary from one person. Select a group of 15-20 subjects (try to get the same number of male and female). See how many numbers they can remember by seeing them on a flash card. Then repeat the experiment (generating new random numbers) by letting them hear the numbers but not see them. You can then repeat the experiment using both auditory and visual at the same time, showing them the numbers and reading them.

You can further expand on the experiment by changing the time that the subject sees the number e.g., .5 seconds, 1 second, 2 second etc.

-- How long after the subject receives the number will they remember them... what if they are asked to read a paragraph from a book after receiving the numbers. How would this affect memory.

--Does color of the numbers change memory -- is color and sex a factor? e.g., if numbers are red and viewed for 1 second will the subject remember more numbers?

--Will people remember more numbers if given the numbers in "chunks."

Creating Random Numbers

You can use this Random Number Generator to help you in creating random numbers after you have designed you tests.

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Chimps beat humans in memory test

Youtube Video for Chimps beating humans in memory test

Learning Styles and Comprehension -- This is an excellent source to view. It is a powerpoint presentation by students from Mount Holyoke.

Memory -- Wikipedia

Visual Memory from Wikipedia

Echoic Memory (Auditory)