How I Use It
I have used this app with students in my Maker Club. I found that my younger students (Kinder-1st grade) struggled with the app because it was hard for them to figure out what the different icons/objects were and how to use them. The video tutorials helped a lot and when paired together or with older students, they were able to create some great machines. The students enjoyed how the app allowed them to be creators and design anything they wanted with the various sensors and inputs/outputs in the app and this led to some great discussions about circuits and ways to build parallel, tangible machines with tools like Little Bits or wires and batteries.
I love how open-ended and creation-based the app is and I think the video tutorials are very helpful. I wish they included slow, simple narration that explained what was happening and how it worked. I also wish that when labels were turned on, students could touch them to hear them spoken aloud and maybe even double-tap to learn more about specific machine parts and how they operate. The "Technical Manual" is very helpful and easily accessible by pressing the question mark in the app. Printing the manual and creating activity cards was helpful for my students and it would be great if there were more activities and questions added to it. Overall, I think the app has a lot of potential to integrate into science and engineering classes, infusing art and technology as well. I think the app requires a fair amount of scaffolding and teacher-support at first for it to be meaningful for students and support deeper learning.