University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Lesson 1: What changes our minds?

This lesson is part of the unit:

Lesson Description:

The purpose of this lesson is to introduce the driving question: What changes our minds? Through a series of discussions, students generate different types of answers to this question using a series of videos in which people of different backgrounds address the question from varying viewpoints. Through their own discussions and others' responses to the same question, students begin to answer this question from both brain and mind perspectives. Students begin to learn an important concept in psychology and science in that over time and based on experiences, people's understandings and conceptions can and do change.

Note: The unit, “What changes our minds? Foods, drugs, and the brain,” shares a common theme with the unit “What changes our minds? Toxicants, exposure and the environment”.  This common theme is the investigation of how exogenous chemicals affect organisms.  Lessons 1 and 2 for both units are nearly identical, and beginning with Lesson 3 the units branch off separately with one covering concepts related to toxicants, exposure and the environment and the other covering concepts of foods, drugs, and the brain. 

This Lesson 1 is nearly identical to Lesson 1 in the unit “What changes our minds? Food, drugs, and the brain.”  The only difference between these two lessons is the homework assignment in which students complete a survey of the kinds of chemicals they come into contact with. In this unit, “Toxicants, exposure, and the environment” the homework survey contains primarily items that contain chemicals that would be considered toxicants.  In the unit “Foods, drugs, and the brain”, the homework survey contains a list of items that would primarily be considered drugs. 

Materials last updated:

Sep 5, 2014

Lesson materials:

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