ABSTRACT

Some 20 years ago-I had graduated a few years earlier and I am already teaching at a private high school outside Toronto-I decide to call my doctoral supervisor. But as I turn to the telephone, I realize that I have forgotten her telephone number. I try remembering it, but-it may appear evident but seldom attended to in the learning science literature-precisely because I have forgotten it, I cannot aim at retrieving it in the way I would do if I wanted to retrieve a bean jar from the top of my kitchen shelf when I make a bean salad. I decide to call the telephone directory assistance in the state of Mississippi where she lives. But as I sit down and orient my fi ngers toward the touch pad, they dial the area code I remember but then continue and, as my fi ngers push the keys almost despite myself, a familiar melody begins to emerge from the receiver. The phone on the other side rings, and then her voice tells me not only “hello” but also that my hand indeed has found the forgotten number.