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Regional McDonalds Grant Enables DIY Neuroscience Learning for Elementary School Students!

Grant Providers Agree, Neuroscience is Worth the Investment

Several months ago, Mr. Skoczylas, an Elementary Tech Coordinator, was trying to figure out how to best introduce young students in his district to the intersection of Life Sciences and STEM. As you know, at Backyard Brains, our tools and labs make it easy for students to begin performing their very own Neuroscience experiments!

Mr. Skoczylas thought the best start would be to begin with an after-school Neuroscience club where passionate students could gather to explore neuroscience, biomedical engineering, and human physiology! This way several other teachers could get involved as well and students wouldn’t be restricted by age, grade, or class.

There was, however, a hurdle: funding. But that was only a small bump in the road, as Mr. Skoczylas sought out and secured funding through a local opportunity!

The #MacGrant is a series of grants made available to educators in PA, WV, OH, and MD. And among many other winners this year, Mr. Skoczylas’s project was approved and awarded funding!

Congratulations to Mr. Skoczylas – we are looking forward to working with him and his team to bring exciting, hands-on neuroscience to their district! We’ll be sure to keep you posted about their progress.

Curious about other examples of successful, grant-funded implementations? Check out the blog post below!


The International Senior Research Fellowship Concludes!

The second half of the Summer Senior Research Fellowship had the students and faculty traveling across Europe as they moved from Munich to Belgrade. In Belgrade, the new base of operations was the Center for Promotion of Science, (an incubator for scientists!) and the team was able to wrap up their projects in a tour de Force. They also had a chance to present their research at Petnica, FENS Belgrade, and Max Planck Institute of Neurobiology.

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Rio Schools Students Love their SpikerBoxes and Claws!

A Middle School Teacher Testimonial!

We met Deborah Antrim, a medical pathway and 8th-grade teacher in Rio school district, at CSTA this past year, and she told us all about the successes she had had with Backyard Brains gear in her classes and summer camps!

We asked her to share some pictures and details about how she had engaged her students with DIY neuroscience, and she had this to say:

We love our SpikerBoxes and Claw! We have a Science Summer camp- with my love of anatomy and physiology, I taught action potentials and explained the sodium/potassium pump and neural conductivity.

Setting up The Claw!

“When researching activities, I found the Spiker box- PERFECT! Very easy to use, STEM all the way! Our superintendent was enamored with the thought something like this even existed- ha!”

This is a great example of how DIY Neuroscience is not just a fantastic opportunity for your students, but it is also your chance to be the “rockstar science teacher!” When the superintendent is looking for chances to brag about your district and school, you’ll be the classroom that they use as an example of how they’re bringing cutting-edge STEM to the students and community!

Students prepare a cricket leg for Action Potential Recordings

In closing, Deb proclaimed, “I am the biggest BYB fan!”

Well, let that be an example and a challenge! Are you a bigger BYB fan? Test your mettle and share examples of your classroom or projects! Email us at hello@backyardbrains.com to share your story!

Bring these same experiments to life in your classroom!

The Claw – $189.99/kit

The Claw allows you to experiment with Neuroprosthetics, easy!

Buy one for your classroom!

Neuron SpikerBox – $129.99/kit

Record real Action Potentials from invertebrate preps, like cockroaches and grasshoppers!

Upgrade Your Lab Stations with Neuron SpikerBoxes!