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An App for STEM Aptitude?


In baseball, batters aim to “hit ’em where they ain’t.” In education, writes Autodesk executive Joe Astroth in a new Huffington Post blog, smart phones and other portable technology can connect students to learning after school and “teach ”em where they are.”

Bringing technology into the classroom, while a worthy goal, is not the only way to enhance learning in the gaming era, he argues. Instead of debating how to extend the school day, why not give students lessons on the devices they use, creating activities that are exciting and cool — outside the classroom?

Teachers and techies both know engaging students is key in learning science and math. They also know that kids spend many more hours learning things outside of school, wherever they are, than sitting in classrooms. And where they are today is on mobile devices like the iPad. The TinkerBox, a free iPad game developed by Autodesk, one of eGFI’s corporate sponsors, aims to spark interest in physics and engineering through an interactive app that lets players tinker with gadgets, assemble contraptions and solve challenging design problems. Students may discover that composing a simple invention is just as easy as composing a paragraph — and probably a lot more fun.

Check out this video demonstration and judge for yourselves.

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