21-Tech

The 21-Tech initiative has allowed me as a Discovery Guide to push myself further on how much information I can process and share with each visitor I encounter.- Odis Garrett, Children’s Museum of Houston Discovery Guide
21-Tech is a bridge between our museum guides and the visitors in that it creates connections between educational concepts and the real world.- Shawn Waxali, Children’s Museum of Houston Discovery Guide
21-Tech has helped Discovery Guides engage visitors by extending their experience through the apps and applying it to the exhibits.- Ian Tibby, Children's Museum of Houston Discovery Guide
21-Tech is a way of ‘hiding the vegetables in the fruit’ where the kids do not realize they are learning, but instead having fun and being fed knowledge that intrigues their minds.- Lauren Bell, Children's Museum of Houston Discovery Guide
21-Tech provides a new outlet for our Discovery Guides to interact with the visitors in a way that further enhances their experience and makes the visit overall extra enjoyable.- Sylvia Garcia, Children's Museum of Houston Discovery Guide

App: Groovy Gears

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App Description: “Groovy Gears is a simple yet challenging puzzle game. Your task is to arrange gears of different size in order to make all output shafts rotate at the correct speed or gear ratio. Unlike other gear-based games, Groovy Gears allows you to stack multiple gears on top of each other, opening up a plethora of new possibilities.”  Taken from iTunes description of Groovy Gears App

How we use it:This app is a great way to give a challenge to a visitor on the gear table, and then be able to check their solution on the iPad to see if they come to a working conclusion. Visitors really enjoy using this app when learning about gears. Groovy Gears mirrors the gear table in How Does it Work?, a gallery focused on simple machines and hands-on science inquiry, by utilizing 3 sizes of gears to solve challenges on the iPad. Our facilitators also enjoy using Groovy Gears because it allows them to spend more time with visitors who are interested in exploring gears in multiple ways.

Museum RecommendingChildren’s Museum of Houston
Platform Used: iOS, iPad2
Cost: $0.99
Link: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/groovy-gears/id440718501?mt=8

Screenshots

Bridging Document

GearsTable_BridgingDocument_21-Tech

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Project Brief

21-Tech partners study and share the effective use of Personal Mobile Technologies (PMTs) by gallery facilitators in their work with visitors. The initial three years (2011-2013) of 21-Tech are funded in large part by a 21st Century Museum Professionals award from the Institute of Museum and Library Services. The project is led by the Children’s Museum of Houston in partnership with Lawrence Hall of Science, New York Hall of Science, Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, and Sciencenter. For more information, please visit the About page.

Major funding provided by:

Additional support provided by: