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Nintendo Labo heads to schools

Institute of Play program will bring the kits to 100 classrooms to integrate into curriculum

Nintendo has announced it has partnered with the non-profit Institute of Play to bring Nintendo Labo systems to, arguably, the best place for such systems. The new program will see Labo curriculums integrated into around 100 US classrooms throughout the current school year.

Students in grades 2-4 will build various Labo projects in small teams, focusing on building basic concepts of STEAM, communication, creativity, critical thinking, and problem solving.

Teachers and administrators can apply to join the program through the Institute of Play's website. Those classrooms selected will receive guidance from Nintendo and the Institute, incuding a companion teacher guide developed by professional curriculum creators that will also be made available for free to anyone later this year.

The Institute of Play aims to select a diverse group of schools across the US for the program across urban, suburban, and rural areas. It also may prioritize schools that already have a focus on STEAM education.

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Latest comments (1)

Jeff Kleist Writer, Marketing, Licensing 26 days ago
Where, unless they have someone watching and carefully monitoring older children, they will last upwards of 100 minutes

Every teacher I’ve interviewed (about a dozen, my mother is a teacher) about Labo has laughed hysterically about it’s chances of survival in an active school environment.

Thr bottom line is, no school district is buying game consoles. There are piles of products and kits out there that actually teach electronics, or like the LEGO ones, far more versatile, and use the technology they already have on hand. $80 for a single use cardboard kit, or $80 to go hunt garage sales for robust, reusable used LEGO (many teachers buy with their own money basic school supplies their districts can’t afford, and do exactly this kind of thing every day)

No school board is going to approve $2-300 for a Switch when the same money buys a tablet, a laptop, or a desktop that do many, many things instead of one. I’m sure there’s some super rich charter schools or districts that may buy a few for some vanity program, but this is PR on a product that isn’t doing so hot. I would not be surprised if Nintendo’s taking a write off through these people (no evidence, just wouldn’t be surprised).

But don’t take my word for it, I’d love to see GI go interview real on the ground educators in a variety of districts (and a variety of financial abilities as well) about these sorts of products, all of them, not just Nintendo.
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