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Learn: The truth about your brain

How to grow your brain

Forty years ago, we seemed to know more about the Moon than we did about how our own brains work. Not anymore! We're excited to share some new discoveries with you. So, how does the brain work?
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The brain can growSee video transcript

Neuroplasticity: Your brain can change.

Since humankind started studying our own brains, we have tried to quantify the capacity of the brain and how intelligent, or smart, someone is. The real question, though, is not if you're smarter than someone else, but whether you can be smarter than you are today.
Yes, no matter how smart you are now, you can always make yourself smarter. There is no limit to how smart you can be and smartness is a process.
How do we know that your smartness can increase and that your brain can get stronger? There's a concept called neuroplasticity researched by Dr. Michael Merzenich, who was a professor at the University of California, San Francisco.
Dr. Merzenich has done extensive studies mapping and doing CT scans on the brains of a person, a monkey, and a rat as they learn a skill. He’s noticed that—regardless of age or species—brains have the ability to change themselves to fit their owners' needs. The brain can change in response to thoughts and behaviors and is often influenced by environment.
Your neurons can rewire, become more dense, and—with the right effort and learning strategies—your brain can adapt and change making you smarter.

Growing your brain

Dr. Merzenich researched more than neuroplasticity and brain growth. He also discovered that practicing one activity can improve your performance on another, seemingly unrelated activity.
Let’s listen to him talk about the research he's done over the past decade.
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LearnStorm Growth Mindset: Dr. Michael Merzenich on growing your brainSee video transcript
As Dr. Merzenich explained, we can change our brains. He gave the example that practicing math problems can help an athlete’s accuracy and decision making on the field.
Math brain
There are many examples of how your brain changes, sometimes in ways you don't expect, when you learn new things.
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