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This Badass Scientist Shaved Off Her Hair To Teach Students About Brain Regions

"Scientists do lots of crazy things."

Posted on April 16, 2015, at 10:58 a.m. ET

MIT neuroscientist Nancy Kanwisher wanted to show her students where all the regions of the brain were located.

MIT Nancy Kanwisher / Via

So she decided to SHAVE HER ENTIRE HEAD. For science, of course.

Nancy Kanwisher / Via

"It was fun. It grows back. Who cares?" Kanwisher told BuzzFeed.

"Science is an adventure. Shaving your head is kind of an adventure. To be an effective science teacher, you need to have a theatrical bent," she added.

She began her video lesson by talking about the cortex (the part of the brain we use to hear, move, and think with).

Nancy Kanwisher / Via

"The human brain is not a general purpose machine, but instead has lots of different parts, each solving a very specific problem. So, you can be very good at finding your way but just terrible at face recognition, or the other way around, because these are independent, separate parts of the mind and brain," she said.

Grad student Rosa Lafer-Sousa drew parts of the brain in different colors to teach students about its functions, like this red region.

Nancy Kanwisher / Via

"Scientists do lots of crazy things," Kanwisher said.

"I see this as not just a way to find particular parts of the brain, it’s a way to discover basic components of the human mind. It’s a way of discovering who we are as thinkers. What kinds of minds do we have?" she added.

She hopes the unconventional lesson will draw attention to science education and lectures on her website.

Nancy Kanwisher / Via

"I think it’s part of our responsibility to share with the public. We can do that by writing popular books or you can do that by putting crazy videos on a website," she said.

"There are lots of ways to engage audiences in the cool stuff we do. This was just one wacky idea, there are so many others. In one of the talks on my site, one of my students zaps my brain with a magnetic field to make me twitch," she added.

And what happens when her hair grows back? She wants to dye it blue.

Check out the entire video below:

View this video on YouTube

Nancy Kanwisher / Via