Volume 13, Number 13 March 10, 2006

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Kids to judge brain science fair

By David Hutton

University of Saskatchewan Brain Awareness Week (BAW) 2006 organizers have teamed up with Evan Hardy Collegiate for Saskatoon’s first “Kids Judge” science fair that will take place on March 18th.

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A group of elementary-aged students will spend the day learning about neuroscience and judging presentations given by high school students, explained Sarah Rigley MacDonald, a U of S graduate student in anatomy and cell biology, and BAW chair. The event is designed to teach children from the community about the brain and to give the high school students the experience of communicating complicated scientific concepts to young children.

“Our organizers on both sides are very enthusiastic about providing activities through which the high school students can interact with the elementary children and, for those interested in going into neuroscience, with U of S students and faculty.”

Kids will have the opportunity to vote for their favorite exhibit, with the top three projects receiving awards, certificates and the opportunity to participate in a neuroscience research laboratory for a day, she said.

“The students were surprised that they would not be judged by university staff and students, and in turn they feel less pressure in preparing projects for judging,” says Peter MacDonald, the co-ordinating teacher at Evan Hardy.

Kids Judge neuroscience fairs have been held at universities across Canada and the United States for more than 10 years.

The theme of BAW 2006 is Nutrition and the Nervous System. Free seminars run from March 13-17 with lectures on various topics taking place each evening at 6:30 p.m. at the Albert Community Center, 610 Clarence Ave. S.

A complete list of lectures can be found at www.usask.ca/ snn/baw06.html

Brain Awareness Week is sponsored by the Saskatchewan Neuroscience Network which aims to promote neuroscience research, education and public awareness of advances in neuroscience research. 

David Hutton is a student intern with Research Communications.

For more information, contact communications.office@usask.ca

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