Learn Morse Code With a Free Anki Deck and Mnemonics

You can learn Morse code really, really fast with a free Anki deck and a few mnemonics.

Download the Morse Code Deck

Open Anki, and on the menu, do File -> Download -> Shared Deck...

In the Search bar, type Morse.

Download the Morse Code Sound and Lights deck.

Morse code is a series of long and short beeps, so you’ll need speakers or a headphone to use this deck.

If you want to import this deck into one of your existing decks, I suggest keeping a separate deck for cards that have sound. That way, you’ll be sure to have speakers or headphones ready when you review these cards.

There’s an older deck called Morse Code, but this newer deck includes cards that show each letter and number as a blinking square. It’s good practice, if you ever want to blink a message with a flashlight.

A few of the cards blink too fast for me on AnkiDroid, as if they’re broken, but most of them seem to work fine.

I suggest you only learn 5 or so new letters each day. It’s easy to get lost with the unfamiliar beeps. Gradually, you’ll see the patterns.

Mnemonics to Help Learn Morse Code

You’ll learn much faster if you also use mnemonics. Each code is a string of long and short beeps. You can remember the code for a letter by finding a word or phrase that:

  • begins with that letter
  • has the same long and short syllables as code beeps

For instance, A is a short and a long, or “dit-dah” (or · —). The word Ahoy! has the same rhythm: a short and a long. And it begins with A.

You can find several lists of Morse code mnemonics online. Here’s a list I’ve compiled from multiple sources. Long syllables are in uppercase, short syllables are in lowercase.

Mnemonic Morse
A a-HOY · —
B BEAU-ti-ful-ly — · · ·
C CRA-zy CHIL-dren — · — ·
D DAIN-ti-ly — · ·
E egg ·
F for a FORT-night · · — ·
G GOOD GRA-cious! — — ·
H ha ha ha ha · · · ·
I it-sy · ·
J ja-PAN’S JAM JARS · — — —
K KRA-zy QUILT — · —
L li-NOL-e-um · — · ·
M MM-HMM — —
N NA-vy — ·
P po-LITE PAN-das · — — ·
Q GOD SAVE the QUEEN — — · —
R re-MEM-ber · — ·
S si si si · · ·
U un-der-NEATH · · —
V ve-ry ver-BOSE · · · —
W with WHITE WHALE · — —
X EX-tra ex-PENSE — · · —
Y YOU’RE a YO-YO — · — —
Z ZINC ZOO-keep-er — — · ·

Source: Mostly from Every Good Boy Deserves Fudge, Rod L. Evans, pp. 120-121, which in turn has two sources. I’ve modified or added a few.

The “long” and “short” syllables don’t always correspond exactly to syllables that are actually long or short, but these are mnemonics, not Latin poetry. If you emphasize the “long” syllables, these seem to work.

Try to learn each letter without the mnemonic at first. E and T, for instance, are short and easy. Only turn to the mnemonic when you’ve seen a card a few times, and you keep missing it.

As always, if any don’t work, make your own.

Morse code is a great example of how to combine mnemonics and spaced repetition. Either method on their own would take much longer. Combine them, and you learn fast.