Hi there, I’m Larisa a children’s staff member at Charlotte Mecklenburg Library, and today I’m going to be exploring one of the ways that your body helps keep you safe today. Um, by doing an exploration of cerebrospinal fluid. So, we’re going to start with this egg.
This egg is your brain. Now your brain is inside your head. It’s inside your skull. A fancy word for skull is cranium. And we’re going to explore how it fits inside your head. So we’re going to take a look at this hardboiled egg first. We’re going to examine it very closely because we need to establish a baseline. We need to know if there are any cracks in this egg whatsoever going into the experiment. So I’m looking, and I don’t see any cracks. So, I’m going to take my brain, and I am going to put it into this plastic container. The plastic container is your skull. Now you might notice the plastic container—if you’re observing things—has fluid in it. It has some water in it. We are going to explore why. The water inside the plastic container is supposed to represent cerebrospinal fluid, which is the liquid that is in between your brain and your skull. So we’ve got skull, cerebrospinal fluid, and here’s your brain. We are going to put the lid on your skull. Make sure we seal it tight as tight can be because we are about to get a little bit messy—potentially. OK, we’ve got it sealed. What we’re going to do now is we’re going to shake! We’re going to shake, shake, shake, shake this. You might hear some liquid making noise. See what else you observe. Shake, shake, shake. I see the brain—it’s moving around in that liquid. Shake, shake, shake, shake, shake.
All right. I think we’ve shaken it enough. Let’s take the lid off of our skull. We’re going to take our brains out. Let’s examine our brains. Hmm. Remember before we started? I said there weren’t any cracks. I still don’t see any cracks. The cerebrospinal fluid did its job. It protected the brain. We’re going to get rid of this cerebrospinal fluid now. We’re going to dump it out. Now we’ve got the skull, we’ve got the brain. We’re going to see what happens when we put the brain into the skull without the cerebrospinal fluid. So, let’s put the lid back on the skull. Make sure it’s on there tight. And we’re going to shake, shake, shake. Shake as hard as you can! Shake, shake, shake, shake. I hear lots of noise! None of the squishing that I heard. None of the watery noise. Shake, shake, shake, shake, shake. And—ok—let’s take the lid off our skull and see. Whoa. Can you see all those cracks? The cerebrospinal fluid wasn’t there to protect our brain. So our brain bounced around against the skull. It got really hurt because there wasn’t anything to protect it. So, the point of this lesson was to show how there is a layer of fluid in between your skull and your brain and it protects your brain. It keeps it safe from being shaken up too much.