BBC Learning English 英语教学

随身英语

 

Why we forget 我们为什么会忘事?

Play audio file

大脑总是在忙着储存信息,但有时候,我们却很难回想起事情。你听说过 “门口效应” 吗?听 “随身英语” 节目探讨是什么使我们忘事,以及如何再次记住事情。

词汇:memory 记忆

How is your memory? Remembering things is an important function of our brain – if we can’t recall how to do something, we can’t survive. If you think about it, there is so much we have to remember – from where we left our car keys to how we walk. Maybe it’s no surprise that sometimes we are forgetful.

Memory allows the brain to store and retrieve information when required. Our short-term memory can hold a small amount of information for a short time, while our long-term memory can hold an unlimited amount of information for a long time. Our memory is amazing, but why do we still forget things?

It’s possible we don’t always store information in our memory effectively, maybe because we are in a rush or we consider it irrelevant at the time. When we do store information, we often make connections with other things, which helps us recall it later. If you don’t have these connections, then it can be easier to forget. Writing for the BBC’s Science Focus magazine, Luis Villazon says “It is also possible that memories decay over time. As they have not been revisited, their biological ‘trace’ becomes weak.” It’s true that if you don’t perform a task for a long period of time, it can be difficult to recall how to do it. This could be because, just like in a computer, our memory is full, or that our short-term memory is easier to access.

But sometimes even our short-term memory can let us down. Have you ever gone into a room to fetch something only to forget what you wanted when you got there? This is called ‘The Doorway Effect’. Writing for the BBC Future website, psychologist Tom Stafford explains that this “occurs because we change both the physical and mental environments, moving to a different room and thinking about different things.” Put simply, we are metaphorically trying to spin too many plates at the same time.

So, if you have a mind like a sieve, it could be because you have too much on your mind. But we do need to keep our memory sharp by continually using it, especially as beyond our 50s our brains tend to shrink in volume and our memory begins to decline. That’s when we’re at more risk of getting Alzheimer’s disease.

However, as Luis Villazon says, “Forgetting is not always a bad thing! It would waste cognitive resources if we remembered every detail of the world around us.” That’s something worth remembering!

词汇表

recall 回想起
forgetful 健忘的
store 储存
retrieve 找回
short-term 短期的
long-term 长期的
effectively 有效地
irrelevant 无关紧要的
decay 减弱,衰退
revisit 重新回想
The Doorway Effect “门口效应”(指瞬间忘事的现象)
physical 物质的
mental 精神的,心理的
spin too many plates 兼顾太多事情
a mind like a sieve “记忆像滤网”,容易忘事,健忘
on your mind 脑子里想着
sharp 敏锐的,机敏的
Alzheimer’s disease 阿尔茨海默病
cognitive resources 认知资源

测验与练习

1.  阅读课文并回答问题。

1. How much information can our long-term memory hold?

2. What can happen to our memory when we are in a rush to do things?

3. When can it be difficult to recall how to do a task?

4. At roughly what age does our memory begin to decline?

5. What do psychologists call it when we forget why we have gone into a room to do something?

2.  选择意思恰当的单词或词组来完成下列句子。

1. I’m so _______ that I can’t even remember my own birthday!

forgetting                       forgettable                     forgetful                     forgetted

2. I need to _______ some important documents from the office before it closes for the weekend.

recall                              retrieve                         irrelevant                    decay

3. After doing my accounts I need some _______ relaxation such as listening to some classical music.

physical                          mental                          sharp                          effectively

4. At work I have to _______ – it’s hard to know what I am doing some of the time.

spinned too many plates                                     spin too many plate     

spun too many plates                                          spin too many plates

5. She has a _______ mind and is quick to spot a good business opportunity.

sharp                              effectively                     physical                      long-term

答案

1.  阅读课文并回答问题。  

1. How much information can our long-term memory hold?
In theory, our long-term memory can hold an unlimited amount of information for a long time.

2. What can happen to our memory when we are in a rush to do things?
We might not be able to store information in our memory effectively.

3. When can it be difficult to recall how to do a task?
If we don’t perform a task for a long period of time, it can be difficult to recall how to do it.

4. At roughly what age does our memory begin to decline?
Beyond our 50s, our brains tend to shrink in volume and our memory begins to decline.

5. What do psychologists call it when we forget why we have gone into a room to do something?
It’s called ‘The Doorway Effect’.

2.  选择意思恰当的单词或词组来完成下列句子。

1. I’m so forgetful that I can’t even remember my own birthday!

2. I need to retrieve some important documents from the office before it closes for the weekend.

3. After doing my accounts I need some mental relaxation such as listening to some classical music.

4. At work I have to spin too many plates – it’s hard to know what I am doing some of the time.

5. She has a sharp mind and is quick to spot a good business opportunity.

下载

下载文字稿

下载音频

订阅和关注
人气排行
Copyright ©