Welcome to the Neuroscience for Kids Newsletter.
Here is what you will find in this issue:
1. What's New at Neuroscience for Kids
2. Neuroscience for Kids Site of the Month
3. Smell Branding
4. High School Talk
5. Fall Field Trip Opportunity
6. The National Institutes of Health Wants to Hear from You
7. Media Alert
8. Treasure Trove of Brain Trivia
9. Summer E-mail Changes
10. Support Neuroscience for Kids
11. How to Stop Your Subscription
A. June Neuroscience for Kids Newsletter was archived
B. Healthy Brain at 115 Years
C. September, October, November and December 2008 Neurocalendars
In June, 5 new figures were added and 49 pages were modified.
The University of Texas Medical School at Houston has developed "Neuroscience Online" for students who want to get into the details of the nervous system. The resource is divided into three sections: a) Cellular and Molecular Neurobiology, b) Sensory Systems, and c) Motor Systems. Each section is divided into smaller chapters with images and animations that help explain concepts. Each chapter ends with a few questions to test your knowledge about a topic.
I recommend this "Neuroscience Online" to high school and college students
who are serious about learning more about neuroscience. The Web site has
a lot of reading and the material goes into the fine details about how the
nervous system works. Neuroscience Online is edited by Dr. John H. Byrne,
the chairman of the Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy at the
University of Texas Medical School at Houston.
The purpose of smell branding is to make people remember and buy a product or service. Scent can create strong, long-lasting memories and emotions that help companies market their products to consumers.
Did you know? The smell of a brand new car is really from a can! The scent is sprayed into cars as the vehicles roll off the assembly line. (Source: Lindstrom, M., Brand Sense, New York: Free Press, 2005.)
For more information about smell branding, see:
Scent Marketing Institute
Brand Sense Agency
During my talk, we discussed why everyone should know how their brain works. Here are a few reasons we thought people should know about their brain:
A. If teachers and students knew how the brain works, then new methods to teach and learn could be developed.
B. Because there are many diseases of the nervous system, it is important to know about symptoms and treatments of neurological illnesses. We could then take better care of friends and relatives who have these disorders.
C. If students knew more about the brain, then they could make informed lifestyle choices.
D. Students are supposed to learn about the nervous system in school.
E. There are jobs (doctors, researchers, writers) for people interested in the brain.
F. Many ethical issues involve the brain and we will soon have to deal with these (for example, lie detectors, brain imaging, "smart drugs," and genetic screening for disorders).
I also talked about places where people get their information about the brain (TV, movies, books, school, Internet) and about the quality of the information in each of these resources. My talked finished with some common "Brain Myths" and an open discussion of neuroethical issues that the students may have to face in the near future.
For more information about neuroethics, see:
Life Sciences Research Weekend is a three-day public event, Friday-Sunday,
Nov. 7-9th, presented by the Pacific Science Center, Northwest Association
for Biomedical Research (NWABR), and Washington Biomedical & Biotechnology
This is your chance to have your voice heard by the major health science
funding agency in the United States.
B. "The Psychoacoustics of Harmony Perception" by Norman D. Cook and Takefumi Hayashi (American Scientist, July/August 2008) discusses why certain chords cause particular reactions.
C. "The Neuroscience of Dance" by Steven Brown and Lawrence M. Parsons (Scientific American, July, 2008) discusses how brain-imaging is being used to study our ability to dance.
D. "The Fragile X Factor" by Claudia Wallis (TIME magazine, July 7, 2008)
discusses how a genetic disorder may be responsible for autism, dementia
and other neurological problems.
A. The brain of a great white shark weighs less than 1.5 oz (42.5 gram).
B. 18% of the great white shark's brain is devoted to the sense of smell.
C. The great white shark has good vision and can see colors.
D. A reflective layer behind the retina of the great white shark eye allows the fish to see in water with little light.
E. Using special receptors in their snouts called the ampullae of Lorenzini, great white sharks can detect weak electrical currents such as those generated by your heart and muscles.
(All facts from Bensen, A., Sense and sensitivity, Smithsonian,
June 2008, p. 41.)
Help Neuroscience for Kids
Your comments and suggestions about this newsletter and the "Neuroscience for Kids" web site are always welcome. If there are any special topics that you would like to see on the web site, just let me know.
Eric H. Chudler, Ph.D.