Activity: Play a Brain Game
to Macmillan/McGraw-Hill Health & Wellness
Web Link Description
Students will enjoy playing
the role of brain surgeon and mapping the brain's motor
cortex at Probe the Brain. This activity
was created by the Boston public television station
WGBH for the PBS Web site. Invite students to explore
this interactive site and discover new facts about the
brain and its functions.
to play a game by demonstrating
which areas of the brain control specific muscles
to learn that certain areas of the
brain control the muscles of a particular body part
to understand that the brain sends
messages to the body that enable the body to move
Tell students to raise their right hands. Then ask,
How were you able to raise your hand? Explain
that the brain sent a message to the arm muscles,
and the muscles responded to the brain's message.
Ask students if they know how the message traveled
from the brain to the arm. The message traveled
down the spinal cord.
If you are using Macmillan/McGraw-Hill
Health & Wellness, have students refer to information
about how the nervous system works. Then have students
visit the Web site and do the Probe the Brain
activity to learn which areas of the brain
control specific muscles.
To complete this activity, students can
use the chalkboard and chalk or a large sheet of paper
and a marker.
Probe the Brain
Arrange students into groups of two or three and distribute
student activity sheets. When students click the Probe
the Brain activity, a new window will open
on their computers. Review with students the directions
for the brain probe activity. Explain that when they
click a specific place on the highlighted part of the
brain, a body part will move.
As students experiment with the virtual
brain on the Web site, have them complete the matching
activity on their student activity sheets. After students
have completed the matching activity, invite the class
to play the game. Read the instructions together, then
select one student to draw the map of the brain and
lead the game.
Print the online student
activity sheet to create a blackline master.
Sharing the Activity
Call on students
to go to the board and write one new fact that they
learned about the brain.
Ask students to explain why the brain and spinal cord
need to be protected when playing sports such as football,
skating, or biking.
Home School Connections
Print the online family
activity sheet to create a blackline master. For
best results, be sure that your browser's font size
has been set to "12" and that your browser
has been set to print in "portrait mode."