Question sheet: Teen Brains, Under Construction
1. What types of behavior are associated with being a teenager?
2. Why do you think some teenagers have a particularly hard time
getting along with their parents?
1. Why does neuroscientist Jay Giedd describe teenage brains as
2. What is gray matter and how does its growth or loss affect a
3. When do brains appear to stop developing?
4. Compare the brain development of boys to that of girls.
5. How might brain research affect teaching?
6. Why might teenagers be more likely than older people to engage
in risky behavior?
1. What are some typical behaviors of kids your age that you think
might be linked to brain development? See
2. Does reading about brain development make you more sympathetic
to kids behaving badly? Should teenagers be tried as adults for
crimes? Why or why not? See
http://www.sciencenews.org/articles/20040508/bob9.asp (Science News).
3. This article describes how knowing more about kids' brains
might help adults understand kids better. Come up with three ways in
which this research could help kids understand themselves. How might
it change behavior or learning?
4. When you're having a conversation with your parent, what do you
appreciate most about it? Are there things you would like to discuss
with your parent but feel you can't? If your answer is yes, why not?
5. Do you think research showing that the brain doesn't stop
developing until a person reaches his or her 20s should influence the
legal age at which someone votes, drives, or drinks alcohol? At what
age do you think a person should be considered legally an adult? Why?