Quaderno di scienze / Science notebook

  • Laboratory of Inphograpics, Iuav University in Venice
  • Date February - June 2013
  • Professor Katerina Dolejsova
  • Collaborators Laura Dal Bo', Marina Mangiat, Luca Migliore

This project is a web-application designed to teach science in a more fun and less traditional way. It’s addressed to junior high school students (10-13 years old).

The app is thought to be part of a system of application teaching different subjects. Each app, and the whole system, tries to stimulate students’ curiosity through interactivity.
The system share the same organization, interface and visual language, so the student can familiarize with it.

Before starting the design of the app, we took few time reflecting on some important issues related to the traditional way of teaching and to technologies. Shortly we thought it was interesting to use instruments and technologies that kids already use – especially associated with playing moments – such as tablets and the interactivity and multimedia they permit. On the other hand we didn’t want to replace the use of book, but create a service that can integrate them.

That’s why in the app you can find the same topic of your science book presented in different ways.
You can follow your lesson in two ways:

the video-lesson it's a brief video explaining the subject through animated illustration, often with data visualization, and it focus on the fact that animation has the capacity of easy-catching the attention, plus it’s very quick to follow;

the conceptual-map lesson, still using illustration and diagrams but accompanied by written texts, focuses on the fact that reading helps the memory storing and the reworking of informations.
With the double lesson you can try different approaches to study.

At the end of every lesson you have some interactive exercises that you have to complete if you want to get the next lesson.

There are also some extra, or “plus”, lessons for those who want to deepen their knowledge. They’re not compulsory so they don’t have exercise.

By completing a cycle of lessons with their exercises, you gain a medal, that you can collect in your profile page.
The round medal turns into a star when you have completed all lessons (normal and “plus”)

Instead of a regular index – as in books – we have different levels of maps that give to the student the possibility to follow different paths in the same subject and to see how different topics are connected, always in a spirit of exploration and interactivity.
We have three levels of maps: the first groups different arguments, the second groups the chapters inside arguments and finally the third is composed by the lessons.

In the whole app there is deep attention to navigation, in the index-maps but also inside the single lesson you can always see where you are, what are the lesson you have completed and what you can do next.

My role – We worked all together in creating a strong concept for the app, then I focused on the layout of lessons and exercises, on the navigation inside lessons and in the app. I did the copywriting of the example lesson and helped translating it into visual images for the storyboard.