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Brain Training for Everyone

Evening Lecture/Seminar

Thursday, March 24, 2022 - 6:45 p.m. to 8:15 p.m. ET
Code: 1K0224
This program is part of our
Smithsonian Associates Streaming series.
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Ready to muscle-up your brainpower? Dive into many techniques of mental calisthenics in an enjoyable interactive program led by Stanley Newman, crossword editor for Newsday, and put them to practical use with numerous real-life examples.

Newman leads lateral-thinking exercises that can help you get past mental roadblocks to find solutions to everyday challenges. (Sample puzzle: A truck driver is going south on a northbound one-way street. A police officer sees the driver doing this but makes no attempt to stop her. Why? Check out the answer below*.)

He also introduces creativity builders, which can lead your brain to places it’s never gone before by asking yourself the right questions. (Here’s one to ponder: If you could invent something that would make your life easier or more fun, what would it be?) 

Newman also leads some rounds of enhanced Twenty Questions (it’s not just animal, vegetable or mineral anymore), and challenges you to learn to make optimal use of your resources (besides spending it, how many different uses can you think of for a dime?). Finally, he reveals why you should you watch “Jeopardy!” with your finger on the remote’s pause button.

Newman holds the world's record, set in 1996 under Guinness Book conditions, for the fastest completion of a New York Times crossword: 2 minutes, 14 seconds. He is the author or editor of more than 200 books, which include collections of crosswords and word games; crossword reference books; his memoir and instructional manual Cruciverbalism; and 15,003 Answers: The Ultimate Trivia Encyclopedia.

*Lateral-thinking puzzle answer: The officer doesn't stop the truck driver because she’s walking down the street.

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