The time certainly does fly when you’re busy! Since my last blog post I have worked hard on the stimuli to get them to work as we hope they would, and have sorted out an occluder (something to block the edges of the screen from the viewer, so they can’t gauge the orientation of the screen). And I am now in the process of recruiting volunteers and running the experiment.
On Monday I helped out at an ION outreach programme at the Kids Kabin in Walker, an after-school club. School classes have been visiting the centre during school hours to learn different things not seen in a classroom such as pottery, cooking, and including a session on the brain ran by ION. In this session the children (varying age) are taught about how the brain works and how the different parts of the brain handle different tasks. They are engaged in activities they wouldn’t see normally such as the Stroop task (reading out the colour of the words font, rather than the name of the colour, for instance BLUE RED YELLOW would be RED GREEN BLUE and also wearing some custom made glasses which warp the view the of the world the child sees, which are worn and a simple task, like throwing a ball into a basket, is attempted. The emphasis of the classes is to teach the various regions of the cortex and how they work together to perform even simple tasks. The day was good fun for the kids and for the grown ups! Looking forward to going next week!