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Mentalrobics™

You exercise your body to stay physically in shape, so why shouldn't you exercise your brain to stay mentally fit? With these daily exercises you will learn how to flex your mind, improve your creativity and boost your memory. As with any exercise, repetition is necessary for you to see improvement, so pick your favorite exercises from our daily suggestions and repeat them as desired. Try to do some mentalrobics every single day!

Engineering challenges are fun activities that are frequently assigned to students in physics or engineering classes, but they can easily be used outside of these venues. An engineering challenge usually has a simple goal and some rules about what sorts of materials you are allowed to use. These are great ways to get people thinking creatively and to foster teamwork and competition. Try an engineering challenge at a birthday party, office outing, scout meeting, or any other gathering where you want to have fun and exercise your creativity.

The objective in the Catapult challenge is to fling a tennis ball the furthest distance. Each team is given the same kit of supplies, which could contain things like wood, nails, rubber tubing, dowels, etc. Teams can construct traditional catapults, trebuchets or more creative flinging devices if they wish. In addition to the distance challenge, you might want to set up targets and give prizes for accuracy. Each team will be allowed to aim and make adjustments in an attempt to get closest to the target.

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pur-lieu

noun :: A frequently visited place.

"These skulking visitors would keep about the purlieus of the camp until daylight; when, on the first stir of life among the sleepers, they would scamper off until they reached some rising ground, where they would take their seats, and keep a sharp and hungry watch upon every movement." --Irving, Washington

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Procedural memory is the memory that involves the learning of a skill. If you learn to knit a sweater, then you are using your procedural memory. This type of memory is often used without thinking about it. For example, if you have learned how to ride a bike, you no longer have to consciously think about pedaling; your body just does it. Procedural memory is very long lasting. Once we learn something in this way, it is very difficult to unlearn it. Hence the phrase, "It's like riding a bike."

Some evidence seems to show that the cerebellum and basal ganglia are the parts of the brain that are primarily responsible for this type of memory and that the hippocampus has little involvement. This may be why people with Alzheimer's Disease rarely lose their procedural memory.

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