Friday, August 12, 2011

Language Arts - An Eight Planet, Solar System, Mnemonic


While we really like the "My Excellent Mother Just Served Us Nine Pizzas" mnemonic, for remembering the order of the planets in the solar system, we don't care as much for the "My Excellent Mother Just Served Us Nothing", that we have left since losing Pluto to dwarf planet standing. The Nothing, makes us miss the Nine Pizzas, and missing the Pizzas makes us miss Pluto as a planet.

We decided what we need is a new mnemonic, altogether. Unfortunately, once you have a mnemonic stuck in your head, it can be difficult to come up with anything else. So, I gave the younger children a project this morning, to jump start our creative thinking, and to practice their cutting, letter, and reading skills to boot.

They cut out eight circles, I had traced for them on scrap paper...


...and printed the first letter of each planet in order, with some help, on the circles.


Then, they sorted through a couple of old magazines, and catalogs, looking for, and cutting out, words that started with those letters...



...placing them on their proper circles...


...for us all to use in an attempt at coming with a new, and improved, eight planet, mnemonic.


So far, we haven't come up with anything good.


In fact, after several attempts, we decided we needed more J words, and more verbs. So, it was back to the magazines.


I have a feeling, by the time we actually come up with anything we like, we'll have the order of the planets memorized well enough, not to need the mnemonic anymore, anyway. Maybe then, we can start working on a mnemonic to help us remember how to spell mnemonic.

It's great to be a homeschooler.

11 comments:

Kylie said...

That could certainly keep them busy for some time. Hope you come up with something!

April said...

I learned it as "My Very Educated Mother Just Showed Us Nine Planets" but now I don't know what to use without Pluto

Joyful Learner said...

We're learning about the planets now too and we tried to come up with words...not easy to put them all together! I like April's mnemonic device...I never could remember the mnemonics very well but that one actually makes sense so I would remember it! Too bad it's no longer works! Poor Pluto!

Kirsty said...

My daughter is learning about space too - the kids came up with "My Very Eager Mother Just Served us Nachos"

An Almost Unschooling Mom said...

Kristy - That has some promise! But, I'm not sure if we might still miss the pizzas :)

Ticia said...

You know for some reason I'm also bad with mnemonics. But, I love the idea behind this activity.

Joyful Learner said...

I just found the mnemonics for the 11 planets and posted it on my blog. It was created by a 10 year old.

Raising a Happy Child said...

I looked and looked at the phrase trying to figure out what's wrong with it, and then realized that Venus is missing :) Interesting idea for mnemonic memorization. The only thing that I was able to memorize mnemonically from my Russian school days is PI value.

Christy said...

Fabulous lesson. I hope you come up with something wonderful!

Anonymous said...

My Very Excellent Mother Just Served Us Noodles :)

Mou Bhattacharyya said...

thanks for the fresh approach to science. its great. your idea inspired me and lit up my bulb in the brain. another can be- "My Very Excellent Mother Just S
erved Us Nuggets!". thanks a lot