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An evening of neuroscience fun for local Scouts

22 February 2019

jenga scouts
Scouts enjoying the Giant Jenga Challenge developed by Emma Dalton.

From inflatable brain domes to neuron modelling and MRI Scan tours, a team of budding young scientists enjoyed a full range of science engagement activities at this January’s Scouts Night.

Forty children from the Cardiff 1st St Mellon’s Scout and Cub Groups joined neuroscience researchers at Cardiff University’s Hadyn Ellis Building on Friday 8 February for a night of brain-related fun.

model a neuron scouts
STEM Ambassadors show Scouts how to model a neuron out of multicolored pipe cleaners.

Hosted by the Neuroscience and Mental Health Research Institute (NMHRI), the event saw Scouts and Cubs putting their skills to the test as they engaged in science challenges. Games included everything from Giant Brain Jenga to Stroop Racing, some of the annual Brain Game’s most popular activities.

A highlight of the evening for many, was the tour of CUBRIC’s mock MRI scanner. CUBRIC Kids did a fantastic job of making the experience of having an MRI scan as a child super exciting, offering an opportunity to take part in their study and take home a picture of your brain.

CUBRIC kids
Mock MRI scan experience with CUBRIC Kids.

Scout Leader, Ceri Allen, said: “The scouts all enjoyed the activities and challenges. The tour of CUBRIC went well, I don't think many of us had seen an MRI in place and it was an impressive piece of kit.”

The evening was concluded with an awards presentation to the fastest stroop racer and everyone was given goody bags which included gifts, certificates, brain sweets and instructions for an activity to extract DNA from peas at home.

animal brains scouts
Identifying animal brains with STEM Ambassadors.
scouts night goggles
Trying to play catch wearing Prism goggles which invert the image that you see.

We would like to give a special thanks to Promega, Eppendorf, Sarstedt, Abcam, Starlab and Fisher Scientific who kindly provided gifts. The biggest ‘thank you’ must go to our fantastic team of volunteers, who keenly gave up their Friday night to deliver these activities so wonderfully and educate the next generation of neuroscientists.

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