power for the graphics is necessary to
simulate the flowing water, a top feature for
Smith and Bayley constructed the chassis to hold the projector at the precise distance from both the stand and the cart so
the sandbox can be wheeled easily into
“Hopefully, we will collaborate more in
the future and continue making cool stuff,”
Ratkus says, reflecting on the teamwork.
Similar software can be seen in other
educational equipment and art performances across the country; however, the
creation by Smith, Bayley and Ratkus offers
topological lines of study and the ability to
create students’ own mini worlds.
“I am thrilled that the teachers are so
excited about using the AR sandbox in their
classrooms,” Smith says. “We felt that it
would be a great resource to make concepts like topographic maps
more concrete and understandable for students.”
Todd Millar, an environmental science teacher at Lebanon
(Indiana) High School, has been taking advantage of Science Express
lesson plans, experiments and equipment for 12 years. He says the
sandbox is one of the most impressive tools he has seen.
“It’s revolutionary to be able to do such things with topographic
maps, volcanic land features and plate boundaries,” Millar explains.
“This will let us do things we haven’t been able to do before.”
And Cottam says, “You just gave me the ability to build a volcano
on a table in my classroom. I can make a model of Mount St. Helens
and erupt it in my classroom. I’m going to have to recover from
By Tim Brouk