Everyday Neuroscience Chronicle

Spring 2016: Everyday Neuroscience was begun in partnership with West Philadelphia High School.  The format of 10 weekly Penn student-designed lab activities was implemented and has persisted.

Spring 2017: Everyday Neuroscience expanded to partner with both West Philadelphia High School and Sayre High School 10th grade biology.  The practice of consistent small teaching groups was established.

Spring 2018: Everyday Neuroscience began a strong connection with Robeson High School, focusing on 10th grade biology.  A practical advantage of the Robeson partnership is the ability to easily walk to Robeson from Penn’s campus.  A group of high school students co-taught “Synaptic Land” at Penn’s Kids Judge Neuroscience to 3rd graders.

Fall 2018, Spring 2019, Fall 2020: The course remained at Robeson, moving to the morning to improve high school student participation by removing the conflict with afternoon sports.  By running both semesters, the entire 10th grade was included.

Spring 2020: The weekly activities with Robeson students were disrupted by COVID-19, and the course was modified for the Penn students to focus on the role of neuroscience research in community engagement.

Fall 2020 and Spring 2021: The Penn student-designed  lab activities were overhauled to be conducted virtually.  Ten weekly zoom sessions were attended regularly by a cohort of Robeson 10th graders.  The virtual setting provided the impetus for streamlined communication, deeper participation, and activities that could develop relevant internet skills.