Tricks for Memorizing Animal Phylum

Tricks for Memorizing Animal Phylum
••• Chris Hackett/Tetra images/GettyImages

Millions of animals are grouped by their characteristics into phyla, of which there are more than 30. Remembering them can be difficult; each phylum has a unique name that can be difficult to spell, much less remember. Begin by committing the spelling to memory, then use different tricks to memorize the phyla. Practice the tricks days before a big test to make sure they work or to fine-tune them if they don't. It may be helpful to know whether you are mostly an auditory, visual or kinesthetic learner before you choose a memorization trick.

Mnemonics

Organize the animal phylum into the nine most common phyla -- Porifera, Cnidaria, Platyhelminthes, Nematoda, Mollusca, Annelida, Arthropoda, Echinodermata and Chordata -- or memorize all 30. Create funny or interesting sentences that you can easily remember using the first letter of each phylum name, or make sentences that begin with the first letter of the phylum then describe aspects of the phylum. For example, remember the nine phyla with a sentence like, "Prince Charles Plays Needless Music And Always Eats Cucumbers."

Flash Cards

Flash cards can be especially helpful in remembering certain characteristics of the animals grouped into phyla. Paste photocopies of animals that best represent the phyla on one side of the card, then list the most important aspects of the phyla on the other side. For example, use a peanut worm to represent the Sipunculida phylum, which contains 330 species of worms that are unsegmented, short and can retract back inside itself for protection. Practice with the flash cards until you can recall the name and characteristics of each phyla.

Online Games

Find an online game that features phyla memorization tricks. Answer the questions within the time allotted and play the game as many times as possible to learn the phyla. Take breaks from the game to reread sections of your books and refresh your memory. Write down questions you didn't know the answer to and look them up in your books. Also, create an online phyla game of your own with questions specific to your class using simple templates.

Study with a Partner

Find a partner to study with, which can encourage you to try harder and therefore retain the information more quickly. The other person may also share new information and new memorization techniques. Quiz each other using flash cards, asking sample test questions and having a friendly competition to see who can list the most characteristics of each phylum.

Related Articles

Easy Ways to Recognize Bones in Anatomy
Tips on Remembering Strong Acids & Bases
How to Study Times Tables
How to Use Counters in Math
Kindergarten Games for Identifying Numbers 1-20
4 Simple Steps to Taking More Effective Notes
Activities to Go With Tiddalik the Frog
Trick to Learning the 3 Times Tables
How to Teach Elementary Division for Kids
How to Convert Pounds to Ounces
How to Memorize the Periodic Table With a Song
The Best Study Tips for Every Type of Learner
How to Memorize the Periodic Table
How to Help a Child Memorize Multiplication Tables
Hands on Math Activities With Equivalent Fractions
How to Make a Math Puzzle
Math Strategies for Kids With Learning Disabilities
Life Cycle School Project Ideas
Math Algorithms for Elementary Students
How to Learn the Parts of the Human Skull