Three district partners to work with CMU’s BrainHub
Students from three of our partnering districts visited one of Carnegie Mellon University’s BrainHub laboratories in early October in anticipation of analyzing data that scientists there are generating to show how experience changes the brain. They’ll be trying to form conclusions and hypotheses by looking at data being collected from experiments with mice.
As part of a pilot project that the Consortium facilitated, talented science students from Allegheny Valley, Clairton and Laurel Highlands school districts visited the lab after attending in an invitation-only BrainHub Symposium on October 3. Symposium discussions focused on teenage brain development and the effect it has on learning, decision-making, risk-taking ,creativity and mindfulness, among other things.
Following the symposium, the students toured labs involved in BrainHub research led by Professor Alison Barth. In the coming weeks, they’ll work at their home schools with CMU graduate students and post-doctoral fellows to analyze data coming from the labs. Later in the year, the students will return to CMU to make presentations from their findings.
“This kind of connection between schools and our region’s rich learning resources is something we’ve been working toward with multiple partners and through multiple programs” said the Consortium’s Executive Director Mary Kay Babyak.
Participating schools also are anxious to find partnerships that connect students and teachers with the world outside the classroom. Such partnerships not only provide opportunities to apply classroom learning, they also give kids a window on different careers and working environments as well as opportunities to observe and practice the transferrable skills that are critical to future success.
“We’re very excited about the opportunity for our district and students to partner with CMU’s BrainHub,” said Laurel Highlands Curriculum Director Randy Miller. “It will provide real world application of learned science skills to our students as they work through the identified data.”