If you’re having trouble reconciling the growing emphasis on STEM education with the fact that you don’t remember a damn thing from your high school physics class, relax. Tinybop, the designer studio behind weird, engaging app games like The Robot Factory and Homes, has your back with their latest: Simple Machines.
The app presents kids with 6 elements of basic mechanics — levers, pulleys, wheel and axles, screws, inclined planes, and wedges — that they use to solve playful little physics puzzles, like cracking open ice boulders with wedges or using levers to lay siege to a castle. You know, typical real-world stuff your kid might have to face some day.
Kids have to mess around with the machines to see how different physical principles apply to different situations, and can show or hide explanations behind what’s happening. Of course, physics is super confusing, because it’s physics, so the app offers a downloadable companion, the Simple Machines Handbook, to help you better understand what’s going on and explain it to your kid. Or perhaps vice versa.
Simple Machines: $2.99 (iOs)
[vimeo http://www.vimeo.com/127094217 expand=1]