What is The Sandbox?
The Sandbox is an app in which you can build vast worlds (think Minecraft but in 2D). Have a look at the intro video:
How did I use it in a lesson?
As part of our topic on mountains, as a starter activity, I asked the pupils to build a mountain and then map the different zones.
How else could the app be used?
- Try some art projects. The game is in pixels and 11 different colours- interesting effects can be created. Furthermore colours can be changed and light shows made (use bulbs, pulsating sensors and LED’s for this).
- Explore reactions between different elements; discussions can be undertaken for the scientific accuracy of these. I have demonstrated states of matter (steam, water and ice) also water pollution (mixing acid and water).
- Study the inputs and outputs in the game; this is useful for computing lessons.
- Make electronic projects (batteries, switches, diodes, not/or gates).
- Probability machines are very useful in maths lessons.
- Create geography projects such as the water cycle and volcanoes.
Another good use of the game is for critical thinking, problem-solving and exploration. My class have had excellent conversations and it has definitely improved their speaking and listening skills:
The children are engaged because they are discussing / interrogating something they are very interested in.
Have you used The Sandbox? What did you think? Did it have an impact on the students? Comment below!