App Name: Gadgetarium
What does it promise?: The Gadgetarium App promises to be a virtual and interactive encyclopedia for children ages 6-15 and even adults. The app also says it can provide useful information on some of the world's most important early gadgets such as the wheel and abacus to some modern inventions used today such as Google Glass and radios.
Does it deliver?: Yes. With the Gadgetarium App children and adults can learn some very important information about some of the world's earliest gadgets while introducing some that we use today. Navigation is a bit difficult because there is plenty going on. That being said you are able to play a voice that relays information or click a drop down that has useful historical information about the gadget. The app is limited in that it only provides 23 of the world's useful gadgets. The interactive capabilities are impressive as you are able to use the scale by dragging items and placing them on either side of the scale. Gadegtarium makes it easier to put some of the most useful gadgets invented into context for children in a very concise package.
Can I use it in the classroom?: Yes but the for a very structured lesson. The app provides important dates for the time period in which these gadgets were invented. It’s great for a history lesson that would ask students to study the dates and uses of these instruments. They would also be able to use the app to study on their own time and explore the way it’s used. Students could be asked to generate a timeline or possibly fill in a timeline with the appropriate gadget along with its use. It is a good supplement to understanding the historical context of gadgets we use today and the origins of others such as the calculator, which stems from the invention of the Abacus. Some students might just be more engaged with a lesson that has an app component and using Gadgetarium will save you time that you may have spent searching for your own images and descriptions of historical gadgets.
Article by Navi Persaud, Education World Contributor