In what way do the thoughts you have and the words that express those thoughts affect the brains of your listeners? What if your words actually change the brain processes of others?. While it may seem far-fetched, research suggests that this indeed is the case. Take a look.

Who is he:

He is a neuroscientist conducting research at Princeton University.

Why you should view:

Uri Hanson reveals the power of storytelling to influence the thought processing of listeners. There are some real life applications that viewer should be aware of. If your stories affect the neural patterns of others, what is the affect one your brain as you listen to others?

Discussion Questions:

  1. How does one’s communication system record memories, dreams and ideas and transmit them to the brain?
  2. According to Hanson, what is happening in one’s brain when listening to a story?
  3. Describe how the metronome analogy illustrates language understanding. Also, discuss the role of meaning as related to learning language.
  4. Speculate as to how Hanson’s research explains both language comprehension and production in young children
  5. What would the best strategy for a parent to use to insure that a child is linguistically competent.
  6. Hanson tells about research that reveals that information provided in the context of conversation affects understanding and recall of information. View the Tedtalkspsychology by Elizabeth Loftus ( and compare the findings.

Making Connections:

Here is a link to a Psychology Today article about Uri’s research,

This is your brain on communication with Uri Hanson


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