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Improve your memory with the SCL method

Improve your memory with the SCL method
The SCL method was invented by the French memory champion Sébastien Martinez. This approach aims to train your memory and help you retain information for longer by creating stories. In this article you will learn how to learn using this technique.

S for Senses

S stands for senses in the acronym SCL. You should include all of your senses; sight, touch, taste, hearing and smell. This is because several studies have shown that each type of perceived information (visual, auditory, tactile, taste or sound) corresponds to a specific area of your brain.

By associating information with several senses, you amplify the connections within your brain and therefore you increase the chances of finding it later.

C for Childhood

C stands for childhood in the acronym SCL. Quite simply, the idea is to think back to your childhood which was a time when your imagination was limitless. You had to find a way to keep yourself busy, whether it was by making up stories, making imaginary friends or creating a new game. Let yourself be inspired by your memories or imagine a story that you’d find in a children’s book.

L for Link

Finally, the L stands for link in the acronym SCL. To be able to make a useful story, the actions and the characters must have links that match each other. So, create links between the different elements by drawing on a common thread.

Make up stories to remember

For this first exercise, the goal is to memorise these 6 words: fox, necklace, trumpet, island, palm tree and armbands.

Here’s an example of the kind of story you could create:

This is the story of a fox who loves to wear necklaces. This fox loves to play the trumpet but he is tired of playing it at home. So, he decides to go to an island in the middle of the sea to play it. As on most islands, there happens to be a palm tree. After playing the trumpet for a while, the sun starts to set. He then decides to put on his armbands and he goes into the water to cool off.

It’s quite easy to create this kind of story. You just have to use your imagination and create links between the words and your senses.


In this case, several links were made. For visual perception, the story has the image of a fox wearing necklaces. Then, for auditory perception, there is the sound of the trumpet. For touch and smell you can think of the island and what it feels like to bury your feet in the warm sand while the smell of the sea wafts through the air.


In conclusion, you can use this method to remember different things, not only a list of words but also dates or even a theme. If you want to discover other methods that help you learn and read, check out the article on the SQ3R method or read the article Learn smarter, not harder, which will give you an overview of different learning strategies.
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