App review by Mark Raby, Common Sense Education | Updated June 2012
Auditorium: The Online Experience

Auditorium: The Online Experience

Unique game introduces angular concepts in the midst of music creation

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4–10 This grade range is based on learning appropriateness and doesn't take into account privacy. It's determined by Common Sense Education, not the product's publisher.
Subjects & Skills
Arts, Science, Creativity, Critical Thinking

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Pros: Simple design; this game is easy for anyone to start playing immediately.

Cons: Mathematical concepts are not explained in detail.

Bottom Line: By letting kids solve puzzles to create music, this game provides a fun way for kids to explore angle measurement and the direction of light.

Teachers could use this game as a complement to any lesson on angles. In addition to having students try to complete each level, this unique game can also be used to help students understand other, more specific angular concepts. For example, ask them to try to create a right angle, acute angle, or obtuse angle. The game also encourages musical creation, and could be used in a music class as a novel break from a more traditional curriculum.

Teachers can use this game in a computer lab or by breaking students into groups in a classroom. The group can brainstorm on how to solve each puzzle.

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Students must direct a flow of light into multiple musical containers on the screen. When the containers start to fill up, they create to a wonderful orchestral tune. The light appears as gusts of wind, and the only control players have over it are arrows that can be used to manipulate its direction. Players have a limited number of arrows in each level so they must use spatial and logic skills to figure out how to alter the gusts so they flow seamlessly from point A to point B. The game becomes increasingly complicated as various obstacles and new elements, such as color-changing filters, are introduced.

This game can be most explicitly linked to lessons on measuring the angles between two intersecting lines. It also helps players judge spatial relationships between objects. This game uses realistic physics to alter the movement of a sparkling water-like substance, and kids will need to figure out how their actions impact the flow of this substance. With the goal of redirecting the flow into containers to create music, kids can experiment with how they want to solve each puzzle. There are potentially several different ways to solve each puzzle, so players can be creative instead of conforming to one individual solution. The game doesn't provide any help but it is not possible to fail in this game. Rather, kids will continue to work on each puzzle until they solve it.

Overall Rating

Engagement Would it motivate students and hold their interest? Is it visually appealing? Would it inspire teachers to try something new or change their instruction?

This game creates a magical way to create music -- by solving physics puzzles involving bending light. Since there is no one right answer, kids feel empowered to explore.

Pedagogy Does the tool help teachers promote a more student-centered experience? Will students gain conceptual understanding or think critically? Does it deepen teachers’ pedagogical thinking?

Kids learn by experimenting with the arrows and other tools given to them to manipulate the flow of light. There are potentially several different ways to solve each puzzle, so players can be creative.

Support Can students and teachers get assistance when they need it? Is it created with people of different abilities and backgrounds in mind? Is learning reinforced and extended beyond the digital experience?

The game doesn't provide any help but it is not possible to fail in this game. Rather, kids will continue to work on each puzzle until they solve it.

Common Sense reviewer

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Featured review by
Anna G. , Classroom teacher
Classroom teacher
James Denman Middle School
San Francisco, United States
Fun way to help students develop spatial skills.
I think this is a fun game to use with kids that need a higher challenge. Students may find it a little frustrating because there are no directions that really come with the game and there is no concrete solution for each puzzle. Students who frustrate easily will give up. Students who are motivated and like being challenged will continue playing the game. The great part is that all students can try to play the game regardless of reading or language level.
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