Our volunteer ICD graduate students visit classrooms or other learning communities in the Twin Cities metropolitan area to give lessons about the developing brain.
In-person lessons are generally 60 minutes, with virtual sessions lasting 30-45 minutes. Lessons typically target fourth to eighth graders; however, we're happy to adjust the structure and content of our lessons for different age ranges by request.
Generally, each lesson has two parts: a presentation and time for interactive activities.
We aim to make our lessons informative—and fun! We cover basic neuroscience concepts, discuss brain development across time, and explore the power we have over our own brain development.
By the end of the lesson, students will be able to answer:
- How is the brain structured? How does it work? What does it look and feel like?
- How does the brain change across childhood? When do certain areas of the brain develop?
- How do our experiences shape our brains? What can we do to support our own brain development?
We use several tools and activities to help bring scientific concepts to life, including:
- brain specimens to highlight the different areas of the brain
- a bean bag toss to show neuroplasticity in real-time
- an eraser with pins to explain how the sensory cortex is organized