Virtual BRAINY Adventures 

In 2021, after a year spent in quarantine, we are excited to announce the launch of BRAINY Adventures, a virtual offshoot of our typical school visits. With the help of our amazing BRAINY teams, we have built a library of lesson plans for DYI brain science experiments. Lessons are appropriate for various ages groups from K-12. For each BRAINY Adventure, you will receive a packet of materials that will include google slides with background information, fun instructional videos, data sheets, discussion resources, and more. Teachers and parents can use these to engage students either in-person or in a virtual classroom.

In addition, if you are an educator in Rhode Island, you can request a Zoom/Google Meet visit from the authors of the lesson plan you picked. These will take place during the months of March and April and are intended as a post-experiment "show-and-tell". Students can show off their work, discuss the significance of their results, and ask questions about the experiment and about the brain in general.  

Requesting Materials

First, we invite you to browse through our "trailers" for the available lesson plans (see below). Once you have selected which BRAINY Adventure you'd like to embark on, fill in the sign-up form to request materials. To access the form, you can either use this link or click on the image below. 

Trailers

The following is a collection of trailer videos for the available BRAINY Adventures. We encourage you to browse through, pick your favorite, and then fill in the GoogleForm at the end of the page to request your materials.  

Multitasking and the Brain - Executive Function
University of Rhode Island
Jennifer Mattar, Sydney Bartman, Victor Hunt, and Lauren Thompson

How do our brains allow us to do more than one thing at a time or remember more than one thing at a time? Our brains are a bit like computers that let us multi-task. Let's see how executive functioning really works!

Sensing the World Around Us - Two Point Discrimination
Roger Williams University - Brain Club
Mackenzie Seccombe, Josh Abston, Lauren McAlister, Jason Ing, Matt Mercado and Arlo Heimer-Bumstead

You've heard about visual and auditory illusions, but what about sensory ones? Is it possible for your skin to trick your brain? How are we able to "see" through touch? Let's find out by learning more about two-point discrimination...and pitchforks?

Money on the Mind - Neuroeconomics
Brown University Neuroscience Graduate Program
Bahati Nkera, Ivan Alcantara, Erin Fingleton, and Kathleen Carmichael

There's a lot to account for when understanding how our minds make decisions about money and understand the impact of spending & saving, long term & short term rewards. Here, we dive in to find out how we wrap our heads around economics!

How Group Shape our Thoughts - Social Groups & Perception
Brown University Department of Cognitive, Linguistic and Psychological Sciences (CLPS)
Joey Heffner, Jae-Young Son, Madeline Pelgrim, and Dave Sobel

Have you ever noticed how the people we spend time with affect how we see the world? Our social groups have a lot to do with what we think, what we see, and how we act. Neat right? Let's find out more!

That's Not What I Heard! - Auditory Illusions
Brown University Department of Cognitive, Linguistic and Psychological Sciences (CLPS)
Alana Jaskir, Meghan Willcoxon, Harrison Ritz, Mahalia Prater Fahey

Did you know you can use your eyes to hear? Reading a word or seeing a mouth moving can completely change the sounds that you hear. Learn about different types of auditory illusions and how they are created!

What Makes Us Dizzy? - Vestibular System Providence College Katie Kuhl, Hannah Delano, Maddie Crago, Sydney Sullivan, Maya Alvarez, and Caroline Tietz

Have you ever thought about how or why you feel dizzy? In this lesson we’re going to learn what that system is and how it works!

When What We See Fools Us! - Optical Illusions
Bryant University
Vaishnavi Sankar, Jacob Goodwin, and Carolyn Kenney

Our eyes can't always be trusted. Sometimes, they are fooled, and we are too! How does this happen? We rely on more than just sight to "see" the world. Find out more! 

Behind the Scenes

This lesson series would not be possible without the hard work and contributions of our BRAINY Teams. Each team spent over two months preparing these materials, including weekly production check-ins with executive committee members Torrey Truszcowski, PhD and Victoria Heimer-McGinn, PhD. We would like to thank each and every one of them and congratulate them for their upstanding dedication to science communication and education. Our amazing Brainy Teams are:

  • Brain Week RI Committee Team
  • Brown University - Neuroscience Graduate Program
  • Brown University - CLPS Graduate Program
  • University of Rhode Island - Interdisciplinary Neuroscience Program
  • Roger Williams University - Brain Club
  • Providence College - Brain Club
  • Bryant University - Brain Club

If you are a scientist interested in adding to our library of experiments, please contact us by email or social media.