Experimenting with our Brains


Experimenting with our Brains (3rd-8th)

Students connect the dots of a star pattern while looking in a mirror. They attempt to increase their speed and decrease the time it takes them to connect all the dots. Students collect data from the experiment and interpret them in the context of their brain’s adaptation to, and communication with, their sensory and motor systems.


Lesson Overview

Students will:

  • Identify the parts of their body used in practice (sensory, motor, & nervous system), then are introduced to the exploration activity with a brief demonstration
  • Trace a star path, first looking at it directly and then looking in a mirror
  • Explain how the brain adapts and communicates, based on their experimentation 
  • Experience to the true story of the upside-down prism goggles experiment

Lesson Outcomes

Students will be able to:

  • Collect, analyze, and interpret data to identify the relationship between sensory and motor memory
  • Describe how neurons constantly adapt and communicate information to the human body

This lesson is aligned with these Next Generation Science (NGS) Standards.

Standards Covered

Disciplinary Core Idea (DCI)

LS1 From Molecules to Organisms: Structures and Processes – LS1.D Information Processing

  • (3rd-5th) Different sense receptors are specialized for particular kinds of information; Animals use their perceptions and memories to guide their actions.    
  • (6th-8th) Each sense receptor responds to different inputs, transmitting them as signals that travel along nerve cells to the brain. The signals are then processed in the brain, resulting in immediate behavior or memories.

Science & Engineering Practice (SEP) 

Analyzing and Interpreting Data

  • (3rd-5th) Analyze and interpret data to make sense of phenomena, using logical reasoning, mathematics, and/or computation.
  • (6th-8th) Analyze and interpret data to provide evidence for phenomena.

Crosscutting Concept (CCC)

Systems and System Models

  • (3rd-5th) A system can be described in terms of its components and their interactions.
  • (6th-8th) Models can be used to represent systems and their interactions—such as inputs, processes and outputs—and energy, matter, and information flows within systems.
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Our Young Pre classroom is for ages. This age group is working