Ruben Estrada, a 16-year-old fellow from Los Angeles, presented his idea of an app called ECHO to connect teachers with their students who have low GPAs or are struggling with their classes. “I was inspired to create an app to stop procrastination, because a lot of students I know do not turn in work on time and drop out of school,” said Estrada. The app allows teachers to send classwork reminders to students, and teachers will be notified once students have seen or opened the file. The completed app will be available to Android and iOS users in any mobile device.
Kevin Soto, a 16-year-old fellow from Houston, has been working on an app since June called One Jump that will provide students with a platform to learn more about college. “I wanted to create a new space to help low-income students gain valuable information about higher education,” Soto explained. Partnering with Teach For American and having Mike Feinberg, the co-founder of the KIPP schools, on the board of advisors, Soto hopes to ease the transition to college for hundreds of students including those on Native American reservations. The platform will be used on the iPhone and Android phones, as well as online for people without access to phones.
Project Our World
“I’ve always been interested in health and the environment,” said Esteben Zaldivar, a 21-year-old University of Texas at Austin student. Project Our World is an interactive app suitable for all ages that teaches human effects on the environment. Watch this demo tutorial here.
Nicolas Badila, a 15-year-old fellow from Georgia, is helping young girls learn about STEM fields. STEMBox is a virtual game where young girls can select STEM professions such as a chemist and mix chemicals in a lab, an engineer and build robots, and an epidemiologist and cure patients. “My two sisters inspired me to create this app,” said Badila. “I want to get girls interested in STEM at an early age.” The app is available in Google Play and in the Amazon App Store.
Watch the promotional video here.
Selina Wang, a 16-year-old fellow from Bayside, N.Y., created Trash Attack, an app about recycling. This 2-D game tests reflexes and is similar to Tetris as players defend against incoming trash by sorting them into the correct bins as they fall. The goal is to collect as much trash in the correct bins as possible, and as the game progresses, the trash falls increasingly faster. “Recycling is a big problem. Why not come up with a game to introduce people to the benefits of recycling?” Wang said.
Rabimba Karanjai, a 25-year-old graduate student at the University of Texas at Dallas, shared an interesting game called MathRacer to encourage children to enjoy basic math such as multiplication and division. The split-screen game features a race car at the top racing other cars. The bottom of the screen displays a series of math questions that the user must answer quickly in order for the race car to accelerate. This teaches children to enjoy math as users are awarded with a faster race car based on how quickly and accurately they answer the questions. “I tested my idea by showing this game to kids, and they loved it,” said Karanjai.
The game is available in Firefox Marketplace.
Michael Sharnoff is Associate Online Editor of eSchool News. Follow him on Twitter @Michael_eSM.