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The Human Brain Coloring Book (Coloring Concepts Series) Paperback – 18 May 2000
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Developed by internationally renowned neuro-surgeons, this book is designed for students of psychology and the biological sciences, and medical, dental, and nursing students.
About the Author
Marian C. Diamond, Ph.D., is a Professor of Anatomy at the University of California at Berkeley. She teaches general human anatomy and neutoanatomy and has conducted numerous lines of reasearch into the effect of the environment and hormones on the forebrain. Dr. Diamond is perhaps best known for her investigations into structural changes in the cerebral cortex induced by an enriched environment and structural lateralization of the cortex as influenced by sex steroid hormones.
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I was a bit concerned that, being from the US, there might be significant differences in terminology. However, I've not found this to be a problem.
You may have to get more colouring pencils as you will need a lot of different shades for each page. My only other (minor) annoyance is that colouring the labels is a pain, and some sort of key with a little box to fill in would be better. However, this does give you time to think about what you are colouring and let ideas sink in...
I have other anatomy colouring books which I have not really used as they lacked detail. This one is great, the price is fantastic (much better than £50+ for a regular textbook) and I would definitely buy it again. If you're a medical student you should too.
P.S. I hope it's okay for me to have added the picture. I wanted to show how I have been using the book.
The only negative I can find is that throughout the colouring section of the book (the bulk) there are no page numbers, they do pick up at the back in the index and the pages are also broken up into chapters and sections but it won't make jotting down a page to look back at it very easy.
Overall though, an absolutely fantastic concept!
Divided into 9 chapters, it takes you on a journey from brain structures, nervous system and how the brain begins its formation to name a few and the illustration are fantastic.
This book only redeems itself with it's description of anatomy, but other textbooks do this better.
The idea of quietly colouring in pictures of the brain to learn its structure really appealed to me and I'm enjoying the discipline and the playfullness in colouring in my book. The pictures are comprehensive and go from depicting the basic structures into very complex and specialised areas of the brain and nervous system.
Choosing the colours, coding them and then `colouring in' really helps to make the structures and functions clear and memorable.
What is not appealing is the incredibly dry and academic style of writing. The authors are clearly good at breaking down pictures to make them easy to understand but they have forgotten to do the same with words. I use this book as an example in my writing workshops of how to hide your main point with complicated words and structures. The first paragraph starts `This is a book of illustrations (plates) and related text pages in which you (the colourer) color the name (title) of a structure and use the identical color for its structural representation. The titles are listed on the plate, and following each title is a letter printed in small type (subscript). In some cases, a number (exponent) is added to the subscript. In most cases, titles are arranged in alphabetical order of the subscripts, starting with A.' It goes on!
They take 2 and a half A4 pages to explain how to colour in - something that most children grasp intuitively! And unfortunately the text that accompanies the brain pictures is just as dense and difficult to understand when they could have said the same thing using simple English. They've hidden the complexity of the science in complicated language structures and it's a pity.
But don't let the text put you off because you will remember and understand much more about brain structure and function by colouring in this book. So if you've ever struggled to tell the difference between your caudate nucleus and your nucleus accumbens or just want to see how your hemispheres are different then this book is great.
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