3 ways districts can use AR and AI

Thanks to exciting new innovations, teachers are improving student learning


NoRILLA (novel research-based intelligent lifelong learning apparatus) is a patent-pending and award-winning mixed-reality system that combines physical and virtual worlds to improve children’s STEAM learning in an enjoyable and collaborative way. It is based on scientifically proven research at Carnegie Mellon University. NoRILLA’s specialized AI algorithm tracks what students are doing in the physical environment and provides personalized interactive feedback to children as they experiment and make discoveries in the real world.

EarthShake, the first educational game for the NoRILLA system, teaches early physics principles through hands-on learning. A table provides earthquakes and students make predictions about which tower will stay up longer. The supporting technology can detect how the towers fared during the quake, and the game’s cartoon gorilla gives the students appropriate feedback to understand the underlying principles.

These pictures are of children interacting with NoRILLA at Bright Horizons and Montour School District.

NoRILLA can be used to teach many STEAM concepts such as inquiry, balance and stability, geometry, symmetry, volume, ratio, scientific curiosity, and 21st-century critical-thinking skills.


MATHia is an AI-powered platform for grades 6-12 that mirrors a human coach with more complexity and precision than any other math software. Built on more than 20 years of cognitive science research, it provides a one-to-one personalized learning experience for every student, regardless of skill level, meeting each student exactly where they are.

Unlike other software platforms that look at only whether a student got an answer right or wrong, MATHia analyzes every data point to understand the student’s process for solving the problem and identifies exactly which skills he needs to work on and what misunderstandings may have led to the error.

Teachers have access to reports that give them insight into class and individual students’ progress. The data leads to tangible action, such as determining how many students are mastering standards, placing students into smaller learning groups, or facilitating teacher-student conferencing. The APLSE Report uses predictive analytics to look at every step the student has taken and predict, very accurately, where they’ll end up at the end of the year. Teachers can then adjust instruction to get students back on track before it’s too late. Leadership Reports give administrators ongoing insight into student, classroom, school, and district progress toward learning goals.

MATHia, which is used by over 500,000 students all over the country, is often used as part of the Carnegie Learning Blended Math Solution, which includes consumable textbooks for group learning that give students a deeper level of conceptual understanding of mathematics.

Innovation will always be part of learning. Recent and emerging developments in technology are transforming the way we think and learn. Access to and availability of data increases by the second. With the shift from the industrial revolution to the information age, students need access to more than computers and high-speed internet in schools. Today’s schools can—and should—provide access to cutting-edge technology that provides the opportunity to learn specialized skills and knowledge in their classrooms, without the physical presence of a subject matter expert, but with their teacher as the guide.

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