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The Cranial Nerve Song — Sensory, Motor, or Both

Here’s a fun way to remember the twelve cranial nerves. Watch and see just how ingenious Leslie’s students are.


Transcript of Today’s Episode

Female Students 1 and 2: Welcome to another episode of Interactive Biology…

Class: …where we’re making Biology fun.

Leslie: Oh yeah! Okay, so then, go!

Female Student 1: All right, so what we’re going to be talking about is the twelve cranial nerves and a fun little way of being able to remember them.

As I said, there are twelve cranial nerves. There are three that only carry sensory information. There are four that only carry motor information. And then, there are five that carry both.

I set it up just lining up the twelve cranial nerves and having them in order of sensory, motor and both and that’s how we get our three lines here.

So, cranial nerves I and II are going to be sensory, III and IV motor, V is both and then, we go back up to motor for cranial nerve VI; VII is going to be both.

Female Student 2: VIII sensory, IX and X are both, XI is motor and XII is both also.

Female Student 1: Okay, so then, what I did because I’m a piano player, I tied it to a musical staff. “Both” would be the space for note F, “motor” for A, “sensory” for C. So, we can tie a tune into this…

Female student 2: … And, it goes…

Female Students 1 and 2: Pam-pam-pam-pam pam-pa-pam. Pam-pam-pam-pa-pam. [Sings the tune]

Leslie: Oh yeah! Do that again. I want to hear it again.

Female student 1: Okay, so again…

Female Students 1 and 2: [Conversing]  Pam-pam-pam-pam pam-pa-pam. Pam-pam-pam-pa-pam. [Sings the tune]

Leslie: Come on everybody, we got to do this together.


Female Student 2: Can everybody do it? Everybody do this.

Female Student 1: Everybody together. Here we go, one, two, three.

Class: Pam-pam-pam-pam pam-pa-pam. Pam-pam-pam-pa-pam. [Sings the tune]

Leslie: Oh yeah! Good job, guys! Good job!

And tell them, if they want more resources like this, they come back to the website at blah-blah-blah.

Female Student 1: Oh, if you’d like more resources like this, go to

Leslie: Oh yeah!

Female Student 2: Oh, yeah!

Leslie: Goodbye!

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Leslie Samuel is the creator of Interactive Biology. His mission is to use this site to Make Biology fun for people all over the world.

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Leave An AWESOME Comment

28 Responses to “The Cranial Nerve Song — Sensory, Motor, or Both”

  1. toasteeze October 25, 2012 at 5:26 am #

    lol at the student in the 2nd row with the plaid shirt he’s usin his hands when he’s hummin hhaha

  2. mustanglp50 October 25, 2012 at 6:01 am #

    Haha Leslie’s “oh yeah” > the kool aid guy

  3. Heather Brein October 25, 2012 at 7:47 am #

    Oh yeah…

  4. Carson McSweeney October 25, 2012 at 11:41 am #

    I want a teacher like that :(

  5. Guido October 25, 2012 at 10:59 am #

    Great and fun job Samuel. Naturally congratulation at your students too. In that way your student will never forget the Cranial nerves. Guys, all you have a very good teacher. At the same way, maybe you could say (sing) what the nerves do. For exemple, cranial nerve I (if I don’t make mistake) is the olfactory nerve and then you could add, maybe, the word “olfactory” in the song or whatever you want like this and so on. Sorry for my bad English, you know I’m student too…
    have a good day, bye
    Guido from Sicily

  6. jesuschildify October 25, 2012 at 7:44 pm #

    hahaha, nice. fun learning.

  7. kevdawg8668 October 25, 2012 at 8:57 pm #

    that is so funny,thanks )

  8. EA Williams October 25, 2012 at 9:28 pm #

    Wow! musical biology. Now that’s fun interactive biology! Thanks for sharing.

  9. Stan October 26, 2012 at 1:22 am #

    Very good I can see that all of your students are now enjoying Biology lessons ;)

  10. Jieun October 26, 2012 at 4:05 am #

    Oh yeah~~ Great idea!!! Really really fun and good memory song!
    Sol Sol Mi Mi Do Mi Do Sol Do Do Mi Do~

  11. Ironelyx3 October 26, 2012 at 10:04 am #

    u guys are awesome

  12. ayub October 26, 2012 at 8:09 am #

    Thank i downloaded it it’s good and i liked it, the student presented very very well.
    And also i download all your Episode 1-97 all are good thanks. If you want a think i will help as just possible as.

    I request you if you can to download a pdf book and send to my email.
    Understanding pharmacology for health professional susan 2010 pearson.

  13. ajastar100 October 26, 2012 at 7:57 pm #

    Well, its extrasuperfantamarvelous song

  14. outlander108 October 27, 2012 at 5:00 am #

    wud that help in an exam?!

  15. Mulalo Magadani October 27, 2012 at 4:50 am #


  16. kozmy21 October 28, 2012 at 8:47 pm #

    There’s an easier way: just use mnemonycs. Some Say Mary Money But My Brother Says Big Boobs Matter More. (S-sensitive, M-motor, B-both)

  17. TimmysMummy November 1, 2012 at 3:17 pm #

    well done guys, I love this. xx

  18. emullen93 November 5, 2012 at 5:53 am #

    Why wasnt this up 2 weeks ago for my phys test! LOL

  19. ForceOfWizardry November 11, 2012 at 7:52 am #

    Not one kid bored or sleeping in class!

  20. NXavier787 November 13, 2012 at 4:06 am #

    Cranial Nerve XII (Hypoglossal) is Motor, no?

  21. TandTPimpsicles November 17, 2012 at 11:06 pm #

    Takes way longer to sing this poorly than to just use a simple mnemonic. That biology class is fucked! :P

  22. azmat005 December 7, 2012 at 4:57 am #

    very nice way of teaching….

  23. 01rai01 December 15, 2012 at 5:19 pm #

    oohhh yeaa!!!

  24. Hannan sabah December 20, 2012 at 3:23 pm #

    in wich stage you are ??

  25. jonzo108 January 7, 2013 at 9:21 am #

    No no no. Some Say Money* Matters, But…..

  26. ahmed mahammed February 19, 2013 at 1:45 pm #

    keep going

  27. Jonelle Baloloy August 3, 2013 at 9:24 pm #

    S is for sensory..?

  28. Tom Kekys December 15, 2013 at 8:53 pm #

    awesome as music really helps people remember…now can put some say money matters to a tune!