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Top 10 Scientific Mnemonics

by Listverse Writers
fact checked by Alex Hanton

Science is full of long lists of important information that can be very difficult to remember. A mnemonic is a small phrase or word that helps us to remember these things. This is a list of 10 mnemonics to help you learn some important scientific terms. This is to be the first in a series of lists of mnemonics.

10. The Speed of Light

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Remember this phrase and when you want to know the speed of light, count the letters in each word of the sentence.

We guarantee certainty, clearly referring to this light mnemonic

299,792,458 m/sec

9. First Eighteen Elements


Memorize these phrases to learn the first eighteen elements – when you are done, make up your own phrases for some of the others.

Happy Henry Likes Beer But Could Not Obtain Four Nuts

That gives us the first 10: Hydrogen, Helium, Lithium, Beryllium, Boron, Carbon, Nitrogen, Oxygen, Fluorine, Neon.

Naughty Magpies Always Sing Perfect Songs Clawing Ants

That gives us the next 8: Sodium (NA), Magnesium, Aluminum, Silicon, Phosphorous, Sulfur, Chlorine, Argon

8. The Earth’s Atmospheres

350Px-Atmosphere Composition Diagram

Here is a phrase to help you remember the order of the earth’s atmospheres:

The Strong Man’s Triceps Explode

This stands for: Troposphere, Stratosphere, Mesosphere, Thermosphere, Exosphere.

7. The Colors of the Rainbow


This is one I learnt in school and it is an excellent way to remember the colors of the rainbow.

Richard Of York Gave Battle In Vain

Which, of course, stands for: Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo, Violet. It is interesting to note that many modern scientists no longer consider Indigo to be a part of the rainbow.

6. The Brightest Stars in the Sky


The brightest stars in the sky (excluding the Sun) can be remembered with this simple mnemonic:

Sir Can Rig A VCR, Pa!

The stand for: Sirius in Canis Major, Canopus in Carina, Rigil Kent in Centaurus, Acrturus in Bootes, Vega in Lyra, Capella in Auriga, Rigel in Orion, Procyon in Canic Minor, Achernar in Eridanus

5. The 9 Principal Moons of Saturn

Saturn And Moons

Saturn has a large number of moons (35 of which have names). If you wish to remember the 9 principle moons, remember your last doctors visit:

Met Dr Thip

The letters stand for: Mimas, Enceladus, Tethys, Dione, Rhea, Titan, Hyperion, Iapetus, Phoebe

4. The Order of the Planets

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Here is a mnemonic to remember the order of the planets – starting from closest to the sun to furthest. Pluto is included.

My Very Educated Mother Just Served Us Nine Pizzas

Giving us: Mercury, Venus, Earth, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto (my favorite).

3. Cranial Bones


Here is a mnemonic to help you remember the bones of the skull:

Old People From Texas Eat spiders

This stands for: Occipital, Parietal, Frontal, Temporal, Ethnoid, Sphenoid

2. Biological Classifications

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Here is an easy way to remember the biological classifications:

[Limping Dreadfully,] King Phillip Came Over From Great Spain

Standing for: [Life, Domain,] Kingdom, Phylum, Class, Order, Family, Genus, Species.

1. Geological Ages

775Px-Geologica Time Usgs

Here is a great mnemonic to teach you the geological ages:

Camels Often Sit Down Carefully. Perhaps Their Joints Creak. Possibly Early Oiling Might Prevent Premature Rheumatism

Which stands for: Cambrian, Ordovician, Silurian, Devonian, Carboniferous, Permian, Triassic, Jurrasic, Cretaceous, Pliocene, Eocene, Oligocene, Myocene, Pileocene, Pleistocene, Recent.

Bonus: Can you guess?


Here is another scientific mnemonic – can you guess what it represents?

Sergeant Major Hates Eating Onions

I will give you two clues: it comes from the category of Geography, and it has nothing to do with the image above.

fact checked by Alex Hanton
Listverse Writers

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