NOVA Elements is a free app about the periodic table. I like it because it exemplifies my envision of how the future text books should be – the science concepts are explained using multi-media materials, such as short videos, pictures, 3D models, short paragraphs of text. Built-in games with interactive activities are there to reinforce what are learned.
When you open the app, you will see three options:
Explore: the interactive periodic table.
This is a quick reference that defines the unique properties of each element. Tapping on any element, that element’s basic information pops up along with a picture. There is a green button on the upper-right corner. Tapping on that button leads to the building area, where you can build the element by putting the right number of protons, neutrons, and electrons onto the 3D model. A nice way to reinforce what is learned.
Play: David Pogue’s Essential Elements.
This is the game area that you can build the molecules that make up a number of objects – coffee, bananas, clothes, etc. However, you have to build the atoms first, by adding the right number of protons, neutrons and electrons. This is another place to reinforce what is learned at the periodic table. The 3D image is easy to maneuver. You can turn the image around to look at the structure from different angles. Only wish I have is there are more molecules to build.
Watch: Hunting the elements
This is a two-hour show aired on PBS. Hosted by David Pogue, it explains the building blocks of nature, rare elements, and abundant elements. The video is divided into 12 chapters. You can choose to watch the whole 2-hour long movie, or pick a couple chapters to watch.
NOVA Elements is a great app teaching elements. With the interactive activities and multi-media components, this app makes otherwise quite boring study into engaging movies and fun games. And it is FREE. It only works on iPAD.
If you would like to check it out or purchase it, please use the link provided. The cost is the same to you, but iGameMom gets a small percentage. Thanks for your support!
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