Summary: Chemistry has been a very theoretical subject. Students have to imagine all the reaction and electron transfer in thier mind. All this imagination is particularly hard for students who have newly started learning Chemistry. So we made an interactive table that will help students to better visualize and imagine how interaction takes place between atoms and molecule. This version of prototype consists of first 20 elements of pereodic table.
ChemicAble is an interactive tabletop interface that helps students of grade 8-10 understand ionic compound formation. It acts as an exercise tool for students to understand better the concepts of ionic bonding by letting them explore and learn. Lewis dot structure which is being taught in these classes, formed the basis of our instructional content for the prototype.
We studied the papers about tangible interface in education to gather how and what kind of interfaces have been used. Another area that we focused on was use of tangible interface chemistry education specifically to know what all concepts have been taught using tangible tools. Simultaneously we went over through chemistry book of grade 8-10 students. The instructional content was take from ncert books for prototype.
The prototype was developed using processing and rear-di like setup. And the development was done with help of processing using TUIO library.
Following were a few considerations while designing the system –
Designed for the Indian students.
Learning is aimed through exploration, trials and failure.
Learning is enhanced by collaboration.
Users proceed through small steps with appropriate feedback.
WORKING OF PROTOTYPE
When atoms are placed on the table, their outermost shell is displayed with the valence electrons. Placing any subsequent atom on the table will result in transfer of electrons between them if possible. Children play around with the tokens to arrive at the correct and stable compound and thus learn by exploration, trials and failures which is one of the most effective and fun ways to understand new concepts and to foster the learning process. Appropriate scaffolding is provided at every step to help the children.
The final prototype was tested with students of Kendriya Vidhyalaya and their feedback was noted. The result showed positive response towards playfulness and as an exercise tool. However, certain shortcomings were also observed which could be used to increase the system usability and effectiveness in future.