Nintendo is going down under with Nintendo Labo, bringing their hands-on technology to Australian classrooms as Nintendo Australia partners up with 100 primary schools in the country.
The aim of this venture is to facilitate Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEAM or STEM) learning in schools. The combination of the Switch and Labo seems to be just the tool to have young children actively participate and take up interest.
Nintendo Labo consists of DIY creative kits which transforms analog interactions into digital play. The schools' curriculum will now include Labo, and it will involve the use of materials such as cardboard, crepe paper, pipe cleaner, and toilet rolls, which will be transposed as virtual reality creations through Nintendo's technology.
"In an Australian-first, Nintendo Australia have launched a new program which will take over school classrooms nationwide, combining the unique play of Nintendo Switch and Nintendo Labo with the basic principles of science, technology, engineering, art, and mathematics (STEAM)," a statement from Nintendo, via Gamers Classified, reads.
"This program will be rolled out to schools across Australia. It will involve Nintendo Australia running workshops and providing Nintendo Switch and Nintendo Labo systems to participating classrooms, to help them reinforce skills such as communication, creativity and critical thinking."
Gamers Classified spoke to CEO and Co-Founder of Girl Greek Academy, Sarah Moran, who highlighted the importance of STEM in school curricula, as well as how Labo tech will be helpful.
"Students will be exposed to STEM through play - I’ve been in the classroom alongside kids in the program and we all had a blast," she said. "This is a new way of getting practical experience, by using technology kids love in new creative ways. The technology allows users to become amateur inventors using a mode included in Nintendo Labo called Toy-Con Garage."
"This extension of the software introduces basic principles of programming and allows anyone to use the tools and technology within each kit to develop their own imaginative creations, from musical instruments to analog clocks and much more."
The program appears to be a successful one, for now, and Nintendo is expected to work on similar projects moving forward as they look to continue incorporating fun into learning, problem-solving, and design.