Monday, November 23, 2009

Neuroscience Resources for K-12 Education

The Society for Neuroscience (SfN) publishes a group of resources for neuroscience education. One resource is the Neuroscience Resources for the K-12 Classroom. This CD can be ordered by educators or downloaded directly from the SfN website.

The CD is described as a "gateway to useful, accurate resources for educators". I downloaded the CD and reviewed the resources that are available.

The start-up screen provides 8 themes for further exploration. The themes include: 1. Addiction, Drugs and the Brain, 2. Anatomy of the Nervous System, 3. Cells of the Nervous System, 4. Sensation, Perception and Movement, 5. Mental Health, Brain Disorders, and Disease, 6. Nervous System Injuries, 7. Brain Basics, and 8. Neuroscientists at Work.

Each theme section contains a series of links to web-based resources. Many of the links from the CD a SfN website resources, while others are a variety of outside resources at the National Institute of Mental Health and other sites.

One significant problem with using the internet for education is the issue of quality assurance. Many sites present information that is of dubious validity. This is a significant advantage of using a portal like the SfN Neuroscience resources. All links have been reviewed by experts to determine their accuracy and educational value.

I found the resource to be quite helpful. It was published in 2007 so there is some dating of the materials presented. Some of the links in the resource are no longer active. Nevertheless, this is an excellent resource for K-12 teachers providing a variety of free materials to introduce students to neuroscience.

Link to SfN Neuroscience Educational Resources

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