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Deck of CardsImproving your memory takes exercise. Some activities train you to get better at committing information to long term memories. Seniors can really benefit from memory building activities. One great activity is matching pairs.

Pair Matching
Many young children have spent hours playing the game “Memory”. And, those were hours well spent. Memory helps children learn to commit short term memory items into longer memories. It can help seniors in the same way.

Matching pairs can be played with a deck of cards or with specialized “memory” cards. If you are playing with a traditional deck of cards, remove half of the cards to be left with only two of each value (e.g., two kings, not four).

Place cards face down. Turn one card over at a time and then turn it back over. Continue to do this until you come across a card you’ve already seen. Then, try to find the card’s match by remembering its location. As you match pairs, remove them from the table until you’ve matched them all. Once you get familiar with the playing the game, try to time yourself to see if you can increase your speed.

Matching pairs is a great way to stretch your memory muscle. If you’re looking for other ways to build your memory, consider story telling.

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