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January 26

January 26, 1990 – The Educational Film The Brain and the Nervous System Think Science is Released

“Cerebrum here! Thinking, movement, judgement, problem solving, no problem!”

On January 26, 1990, the educational short film The Brain and the Nervous System Think Science was released as part of the Wonders of Life Series. The eleven-minute film teaches quickly about the functions of the main three parts of the brain. It was written by Jamie Simons and directed by Lina Shanklin, with animation directed by Bob Kurtz.

The film begins with a greeting by Captain Cortex in Cranium Command before he leads them on a tour of the brain, looking at the cerebrum, the cerebellum, and the brain stem in animated forms. The audience is then taken to a classroom, where a girl named Jessica is fretting over a note she has received from the principal. Her friend Fred inquires what she’s done, but she’s not sure. Another student named Sylvester grabs the note and reads it out loud, informing her that it’s not good. Their teacher comes in and begins their lesson on the brain and the nervous system. Jessica is still distracted from the note, but manages to answer questions on what the cerebrum does. Sylvester is asked about the cerebellum, but is unable to answer, and Fred throws something at him to make a point about how the cerebellum handles balance and coordination. The teacher continues with the brain stem, and then moves into how the brain works with the spinal cord. Jessica finally leaves for her meeting with the principal, her brain working on overload as she walks the hallway. The principal informs her that her project at the science fair won first place, and she will be given an award at a future assembly. She wonders if everyone will think she’s a brain, and when the principal inquires if she is, she smiles, as the pieces of her brain add, “and proud of it, too!”

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