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Психология Building a better brain
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Explaining Teenage Behaviour

Teenagers have big brains

The Teenage Brain

Read the text.

MAKE UP A CONVERSATION between the mother and her son.

Discuss the questions in pairs.

Answer the questions.

Complete the sentences with the correct form of these verbs from the article.

change storm turn get away with put up with

1) His parents aren’t strict enough. He ………. murder!

2) He's 31 and still lives at home! I don't know why his parents ……….it!

3) He'll have to ………… his ways if he wants his relationship to last!

4) She got so angry, she ended up…………out of the room.

5) Sometimes parents have to ………….. a blind eye. It's better not to know everything your kids are doing.

1) Why did the writer and her son start arguing?

2) Why does the writer explain what life in a police state is like?

3) What effect does this have on her son?

4) What has she been accused of? What effect does this have on her?

5) What things does she decide she won't allow anymore? What reasons does she give for why her son has turned out the way he has?

6) What's the worst punishment she can think of?

7) Who do you have more sympathy with – the writer or her son? Why?

1) Do you know anyone who gets away with murder?

2) Do you know anyone who needs to change their ways?

3) Do you agree with sentence 5? Why? / Why not?

Scientists have a new explanation for the behaviour of teenagers: their brains are too big!

Scientists used to believe that our brains were fully developed by early childhood. New research shows that the brain grows very quickly between the ages of 10 and 12, when it is at its biggest. During the teenage years your brain shrinks bit by bit until it is the size of an average adult's.

The frontal and parietal lobes are the last to finish developing. The frontal and parietal lobes manage judgement, reasoning, planning for the future and visual/spatial ability. This may explain why teenagers are sometimes more impulsive, emotional and clumsy than adults. It's not your fault, your brain's too big!

The teenage years are an important time in your brain's development and you can build a better brain. The activities of the teenager influence which cells disappear and which cells remain as they get older. Dr Giedd, a psychiatrist, says, "If you're lying on the sofa or playing video games your brain gets programmed for that." His advice: Test your brain. "If you exercise a muscle, you make it stronger. The brain works like that. Try a foreign language, music, games- anything that makes the brain work hard."

How you're using your brain now, influences the kind of brain you have when you're an adult. Don't say we didn't warn you!

Frontal lobe controls speech, thought and consciousness, body movements and co-ordination

Brain stem controls your breathing and your heart

Occipital lobe controls sight and reading

Cerebellum comes from Latin for "little brain", controls movement and balance

Parietal lobe controls feeling physical sensations, shapes and positions

Temporal lobe controls hearing and memory for speech and music

Image by: Freelance Illustration and Graphics

Source: Witelson personal webpage, McMaster Times, McMaster Courier. Photo, McMaster webpage.

2) Translate: лобная доля коры головного мозга, ствол головного мозга, затылочная доля, мозжечок, теменная доля, височная доля, шаг за шагом/ постепенно, пространственный, сознание.

3) True or false? Give your reasons.

Teenagers have bigger brains than adults.

Parietal lobe controls memory and consciousness.

The frontal and parietal lobes are the first to finish developing.

You can build a better brain only in teenage years.

Foreign languages and music make the brain work hard.

4) Discuss the following questions:

How should parents behave when their teenage child acts too emotionally or rebels?

What activities may help develop one’s brain? Is it easy to persuade teenagers to do them? Why?

Were you a ‘difficult’ teenager? What did your parents do to help you go through the stage?


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