How do you memorize the position of the US states in relation to each other? Click “play” above to listen! Because in this short episode of Master of Memory, Robyn wants to memorize the position of the US states along with their time zones. I describe how memorizing US states can be done very quickly.
After recording the episode, Robyn and I exchanged emails and I went ahead and created some of the images that I recommended in the podcast episode. Check out the images below, colored by name and organized approximately by time zones.
Fun memorization tip: Pick just ONE time zone, and imagine yourself walking around. The blue states (states that start with a vowel, like Oregon and Idaho), are lakes of water. The red states are made of hot lava. The green states are fresh, cool grass. This “imagination” tactic is much more effective than you might think. Try it out, and then see if you can draw the whole time zone from memory!
To memorize all the Central states, imagine yourself walking from Texas to Tennessee to Nebraska and finally to Wisconsin. You have to avoid the states that we’re imagining as “lakes” (Oklahoma, Arkansas, Alabama, Iowa, and Illinois), and you have to run quickly over the “lava” states because we’re imagining that they’re so hot. So from Texas, you run quickly across Louisiana and Mississippi to get to green Tennessee. Then your run quickly over Missouri and Kansas to get to green Nebraska. Finally, after chilling out in green Nebraska, South Dakota, and North Dakota, you run over the last lava state, Minnesota, to get to Wisconsin.
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Music credit: Maurice Ravel’s String Quartet, 2nd movement, performed by the US Army Band.