Your Brain on Exercise: Linking Healthy Brains to Solutions for Environmental Health

Dr. Jeanne L. Cooper, Science, Mallard Creek High School

Final Unit(pdf)   Implementing Teaching Standards(pdf)


Exercise and its potential impacts on the human brain is a topic that is increasingly in the news. This curriculum unit introduces high school students to the potential impacts that the simple act of exercising can have on the health of our brains.  In addition, students are introduced to the challenges we face as a global society in trying to maintain our current lifestyle while maintaining the Earth in a condition where future generations can thrive.  Brain health and its potential connections to human and environmental health are concepts that span the sciences.  Clarifying this concept is one goal of the curriculum unit.  A second goal is to provide the students with the basic necessary information to begin to understand how their lifestyle choices impact not only their own personal health, but the health and future sustainability of planet Earth.  Students are introduced to these challenges and invited to research and demonstrate their own solutions.  The exercises in this unit can be accomplished using the internet sources cited as well as common inexpensive materials.  The unit has been designed to allow flexibility in modifying activities to meet the needs of Earth and Environmental Science as well as Biology courses at all high school levels.