Seeing an egg used to demonstrate bike helmet safety, using pipe cleaners to build a nerve cell, and touching an actual human brain are all part of Brain Night for Kids, sponsored by The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth Houston) Neuroscience Research Center (NRC) and The John P. McGovern Museum of Health and Medical Science.
The UTHealth Houston NRC is welcoming back the annual event after a two-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This year’s free event will take place 6-8 p.m. Thursday, March 17, at The Health Museum, located at 1515 Hermann Drive.
“We are very excited about returning to an in-person event,” said Jack Byrne, PhD, director of the UTHealth Houston NRC and professor and the June and Virgil Waggoner Chair in the Department of Neurobiology and Anatomy with McGovern Medical School at UTHealth Houston. “This event has been extremely popular and successful in the past, and this year, it promises to be even better.”
Held in conjunction with Brain Awareness Week, Brain Night for Kids is geared toward children from kindergarten to fifth grade. Overall, the event aims to raise awareness about how the brain works and possibly create a new generation of neuroscientists.
The demonstrations range from brain reflexes to eye-hand coordination to comparing the brains of different species. Fun activities include learning about optical illusions, viewing a nerve cell under a microscope, and watching neuroscience videos in the museum’s theater. Children are also encouraged to get a hand stamp of a nerve cell or brain.
The brain has been described as one of the final frontiers in science, and investigators at the UTHealth Houston NRC are conducting diverse, multidisciplinary research to better understand neural and behavioral disorders.
At the event, there will be faculty and student volunteers from McGovern Medical School, the Children’s Learning Institute at UTHealth Houston, and The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center UTHealth Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences.
Attendees will be allowed to enter the space on a first-come, first-serve basis, with capacity limited to 200 people in the museum per hour. Masks are not required, but strongly encouraged.
For more information, email the UTHealth Houston NRC at UTHealth.NRC@uth.tmc.edu.
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