What Are the Different Types of Auditory Memory Games?

Daniel Liden
Daniel Liden
Anatomical model of the human body
Anatomical model of the human body

Auditory memory games are activities intended to test one's ability to recall, and in many cases to repeat, auditory stimulation. Such activities can actually help to improve one's auditory memory, if only by increasing the degree to which one focuses on remembering what he hears. A simple form of an auditory memory activity is for one person to speak a phrase or repeat a series of tones and for another person to try to repeat them. Turning similar activities in to games makes them more interesting, though, so auditory memory games are more common that simple repetition activities. A repetition memory game involving clapping and repeating patterns can be made interesting by adding some competitive aspect.

There are many auditory memory games that one can play on one's own to simply work on improving auditory memory on a day-to-day basis. One can, for instance, listen to songs on the radio and try to recall the names of the last ten song titles. While listening to a book on tape, one can try to recall exactly which events occurred in which chapters. In class, one can try to remember lectures in great detail after taking only minimal notes. Almost all situations that involve listening provide a potential opportunity for auditory memory games, though those that can be repeated and verified are best.

It is also possible to play a variety of auditory memory games with other people. Most such games involve some basic element of repetition. One person, for instance, may say a phrase or clap a certain rhythm, and then the other person repeats the phrase or rhythm. The two people involved can switch roles and try to come up with ever more complex phrases and rhythms to repeat and memorize. Keeping score and possibly even adding some form of prize element to the auditory memory games can make them more interesting and can provide an incentive to serious participation.

Auditory memory games are also available online and on a variety of different handheld devices, such as game systems and cell phones. Such games are generally similar to more conventional auditory memory games in that they involve listening to sounds and indicating in some way that one remembered the sounds. They can be particularly useful, though, because they automatically keep score and assess one's performance. Games played alone or with friends are susceptible to human error, but electronic games tend not to make errors and are, therefore, more objective judges of auditory memory.

Discussion Comments


Here is a simple auditory game that I like to play. It is actually a part of a drinking game but it can be played without drinking if you prefer.

The concept is simple. Lets say you have a group of four or five people. Someone suggests a number, something large but not huge. The 20-50 range works well but I wouldn't recommend going higher than that. The idea is for everyone to say a number that is up to and including the number picked.

So the first person might say one, and the next person two and then three and on and on. But lets say that the fourth person broke the order and said 11. And then the next person broke it again and said 25. A player is out when they repeat another players number and the game is over as soon as someone screws up. So you have to remember the numbers that you have said so you can call another player out for repeating, but you also have to remember the numbers the other players say so that you don't loose the game yourself.

Its more fun and challenging than it sounds. Give it a try at a party sometime. If you don't like it you have only wasted a minute and a half of your life.

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