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Brain Awareness Week
Engaging Activities for Adults

Event Ideas

Here are some activities that are ideal for reaching adult audiences:

  • Set up and staff an exhibit table at a local hospital, doctors’ office, senior center, or shopping mall with the Dana Foundation’s free handouts. Print and share our fact sheets and puzzles.
  • Ask your local library to organize a Brain Awareness Week display with books and reference material about the brain or offer to set up your own display.
  • Coordinate a lecture or panel discussion. Consider choosing a theme and organizing several talks on related topics.
    • Broaden the reach of your lecture or panel discussion by streaming it live on your website or social media.
  • Organize a science café in a casual setting such as a coffeehouse or pub and feature an engaging conversation with a neuroscientist.
  • Host a “Town Hall” that brings together scientists, practitioners, policymakers, and community members for discussion about a neuroscience topic of interest and concern to your local community.
  • Host a Brain Trivia Contest. Use our Truth or Myth Flash Cards, fact sheets, and Glossary as sources for your questions!
  • Coordinate a music, dance, or theatrical performance and follow it with a lecture or discussion on creativity or music and the brain.
  • Organize an exercise program and follow it with a lecture or discussion on the brain benefits of physical activity.
  • Create traveling displays or interactive exhibits on the brain and present them at community centers, libraries, shopping malls, and other public spaces.
  • Organize a brain fair with hands-on activities and experiments, poster presentations, health screenings, and more. Invite local colleges/universities and disease advocacy groups to participate.
  • If your organization is a research facility, hold lab tours for the public to inform and excite them about the research being done in their local community.
  • Hold an open house to introduce your organization’s work to your local community.
  • Coordinate a workshop for educators, lawyer/judges, healthcare workers, policymakers, or other professional audiences on a brain topic related to their work.
  • Organize a film festival featuring movies about the brain. Some popular films include AwakeningsMementoInside Out, and A Clockwork Orange. Follow each film with a brief lecture or Q&A session with a brain expert.
  • Partner with a science museum to present exhibits, demonstrations, hands-on activities, and experiments about brain structure, function, and diseases and disorders. Find out what programming they may already have available on the brain.
  • Engage audiences in reflection and conversation about future neurotechnologies using free, hands-on activities from the NISE Network’s Changing Brains project. Activities include:
  • If you’re planning an event on brain development, consider showing the webinar series, Inside the Brain: A Lifetime of Change, from Knowable Magazine. Each episode focuses on a different stage of brain development from childhood to adolescence and late adulthood. Follow each episode with a brief Q&A session with a brain development expert.
  • Show an episode of the Dana Discovery Dialogues, a webinar series hosted by the Boston University School of Communications. The series unpacks some of the most pressing and occasionally contentious topics in contemporary neuroscience, including brain organoids, neurodiversity and accessing creativity, and conversations between your gut and brain. Follow each episode with an audience discussion.
  • Team up with local businesses to sponsor classes and workshops for employees to raise awareness about brain function and fitness, brain diseases and disorders.
Photo of man on stage speaking to full audience
Universidad de Concepcion, Chile, 2019

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