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What does a brain do when it sees a friend across the street?
- It gives a brain wave.
What do you call a skull without 1 billion neurons?
- A no-brainer.
A pumpkin and a salmon walk into an fMRI. And what happens?
Neuroscience doesn’t just make you think but it can also make you laugh! Here is a study which goes to hilarious lengths to analyze the efficacy of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). fMRIs are large brain scanners that measure the brain’s activity levels. What these scientists did was first, put a pumpkin into the brain scanner. If you look closely, you can see the pumpkin seeds but overall the contrast was very low.
Santiago Ramon y Cajal is arguably one of the founding fathers of neuroscience. His birthday is May 1st, 1852 and would have been 165 this year. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine for his early discoveries on the structure of the brain. Fun fact about Cajal – he remains extremely well known in the Spanish community, so much so that his life has become a TV miniseries.
Want to shake up your science lesson? We have the activity for you! This activity can be done with our “How Do Neurons Communicate” video or PowerPoint presentation found on our website (hyperlink to the How Do Neurons Communicate page on website). The goal of this activity is to illustrate how neurons make connections with each other to pass along signals. One neuron can be connected to thousands of other neurons, forming a neuronal network.
To start, get everyone to join hands in a line. Starting at one end, get the student to squeeze the hand on the person next to them, when they feel the squeeze they squeeze the hand of the person next to them and so on. Ask the following questions and provide answers below.