Right Brain Practice for Photographic Memory – Super Flash

Makoto Shichida often discusses the importance of developing the imaging function of the right brain because it which is necessary for developing photographic memory. One of the right brain activities that he recommends to help achieve this is through high speed flashing of images. In Heguru, this activity is referred to as “Super Flash”. In Shichida, it is referred to it as Speed Play in the Home Practice Guide – which you may recall reading about in an earlier post.

Why the emphasis on Speed Play or Super Flash?

According to Shichida, Speed Play is important for:

  • activating the right brain
  • developing your child’s photographic memory function
  • developing the connection between the left and right brain
  • activating the left brain and teaching your child language

Of all the right brain activities, this is apparently one of the most important so if you find you are short on time for home practice, then this is the one activity you should focus on (aside from reading books to your child) – especially in the first three years of your child’s life. During a parent session with Ruiko Henmi (founder of Heguru), Super Flash was second on her priority list of right brain home practice activities.

How to flash

  1. Introduce each series of flash cards to your child before flashing the cards. E.g. “vehicles” before showing “car”, “truck”, “plane”, etc.
  2. Bring the last card to the front and say what it is.
  3. How fast? The general consensus for Heguru and Shichida is 3 cards a second. This can be difficult to achieve especially without experience. It is preferable to go slower and state the label of the card correctly, rather than to stumble through them. Try to target 1 second per card. You may find it easier to flash using powerpoint or a software program like BrillKids Little Reader.
  4. How many? Start with 100 and increase to 250 after one month.
  5. How many times? Once a day is sufficient, but if your child cannot sit through the session, you can split the deck and do a couple of sessions. Do not repeat the same cards in the same day.
  6. Repetitions? It has been difficult to get a consensus on this but based on the pattern shown in Heguru class and discussions with the founder, 4 times for each series of cards is good. In TweedleWink, they believe that it is okay to repeat material that your child particularly favours.

Flash Cards Resources

If you show 200 cards a day (not including weekends) and repeat each deck no more than 4 times, you would require 13000 flash cards over the course of a year. That’s a lot of flash cards to prepare especially if you’re a working parent. What can you do to supplement your own flash cards?