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How Will You Exercise Your Brain Today?

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Awake and asleep, we are constantly using our brains to think, feel, remember, dream and survive. It might only weigh about 3 pounds in most adults, but this organ has a heavy responsibility! How will you use your brain today?


Introducing the Three Main Structures

Our brain is composed of three main parts – the cerebrum, cerebellum and brain stem. The cerebrum is what we typically think of when we hear the word “brain.” It’s the largest part and contains many wrinkles and folds to make the surface area even larger. The cerebrum is used for important functions like thinking, learning, perceiving our environment and experiencing emotions.

Underneath the back portion of the cerebrum is the smaller cerebellum, which contains many tight folds. Latin for “little brain,” the cerebellum helps us get around. It plays a role in coordinating balance, posture and muscle movement.

Finally, the brain stem connects the brain to the spinal cord. It regulates many of the subconscious automatic tasks that we need to survive. It is thanks to the brain stem that our breathing and heart rate remain steady and we continue to swallow even in our sleep!


Exploring the Brain’s Lobes

The cerebrum is divided into two hemispheres and connected by a thick bundle of nerves called the corpus callosum. Both hemispheres have four lobes with every lobe helping us with daily functions.

  • Frontal: This lobe in the front of the brain is the center of high-level cognitive functioning and holds the core of our personality, decision-making abilities and even plays a role in smell recognition. 
  • Parietal: In the middle of the brain, this lobe combines and integrates all our sensory inputs including awareness of spatial relationships, touch, taste, sight, smell and hearing. 
  • Occipital: This lobe is found in the back of our brain and plays a huge role in both perceiving and processing visual information including object recognition and depth perception. 
  • Temporal: Located on the side of the brain, this lobe is responsible for short-term memory, processing auditory information and even musical rhythm.


Activities to Exercise Your Brain

Now that you know a little bit more about how you use various parts of your brain to accomplish different tasks, put your knowledge to the test and stretch your brain with these fun challenges!

To work out your frontal lobe, try activities that call for some sweet decision-making or expand your intellect with a math story mystery. To engage your parietal lobe, explore sensory science by mixing up DIY slime. Practice using your occipital lobe by noticing the colors of nature and discovering out-of-this-world geology near your home. Be sure not to forget about your temporal lobe – use your musical rhythm and be instrumental as you design and assemble a one-of-a-kind instrument.


Learn More

Check out our blog for more ways to bring STEM learning to life for your child and encourage them to keep exploring the world around them.

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