Zed is a new kind of digital interactive tool for teaching Science & Technology. “Stories in the Sky” is our first program.
About this project
Zed and Stories in the Sky
Stories in the Sky is the first program created for our Zed console. It teaches kids about the science and mythology of stars and constellations. But what’s really revolutionary about this system is its new approach to S.T.E.M. (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math education). The Zed Digital Makerspace system has the ability reach a vast number of kids in all types of communities, empower them, and inspire them to learn more about a multitude of S.T.E.M. subjects, like electricity, climate change, space, or thermal energy. How? By strengthening the connection between local schools and science museums.
How students helped us design Stories in the Sky
How do we teach students who communicate, socialize, and learn differently than we did? How do we connect with students who have grown up with technology their whole lives? By embracing technology and harnessing its power. By using project-based-learning in a system that they are familiar with. By letting the students help us to design the tools. That’s what we did with Stories in the Sky.
We tested it in a design workshop at The Museum School…
If this campaign is successful, we will implement the kids ideas for Stories in the Sky and then continue to team up with students to create more S.T.E.M. experiences.
Why your community needs a Zed
The Stories in the Sky experience is really just the first in what we hope to be a long line of STEM focused experiences for museums and schools. The whole system is powered by tech-savvy students known as “Generation Z”. Students at project-based schools provide content, testing, direction, and help shape the experience. Developed with the help of educators and scientists, the interactive experience makes use of cutting edge digital technology – connecting museums, schools, and entire communities. By unifying these three key groups, the project will reach its ultimate goal: inspiring kids.
Our Hardware Partner
Ideum, an interactive HW/SW company in New Mexico, has worked on high-quality software and hardware projects with some of the world’s top museums such as: Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum, The Field Museum, Monterey Bay Aquarium, Museum of Science and Industry (Chicago), Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian, SFMOMA, and more. They have been developing unique experiences for museums since 1999. Check them out here… www.ideum.com.
Stills from Stories in the Sky
We are a small group of designers and animators in Atlanta, Georgia, experts in creating beautifully immersive experiences through the use of art and narrative. The underlying formula for our STEAM educational work is Art + Science = Inspiration. We have the resources, the plan, and the passion to make this dream a reality.
The upcoming Stories in the Sky Science App
The upcoming Stories in the Sky Mythology App
The 2017 Stories in the Sky Zodiac Calendar
A Design-Thinking Workshop for your school. (see video above). Students will learn and apply design thinking to user experience, interactive programming, and prototyping in five one-hour hands-on workshops facilitated by working professionals at Artifact Design. We will also bring a Zed.
What people are saying…
Allocation of Funds
The funds we receive will go towards finishing the Stories in the Sky program, adding many of the suggestions made by sixth-graders at our design workshop (See our Design Thinking Workshop video above), and making the first commercial version of the Zed console for a museum. If we were to receive more than our target goal, every penny will go towards developing future Zed programs, and building a stable organization to facilitate our outreach to other schools, museums, and communities around the country,
Risks and challenges
One of the challenges we must accept is that many museums do not have the necessary funds to purchase high-end interactive digital exhibits such as Zed.
While we believe that a Zed will pay for itself by increasing museum attendance and community value, we also have a plan for a corporate sponsorship model. If successful, this approach will allow museums to have a Zed as one of their permanent exhibits AT LITTLE OR NO COST TO MUSEUMS OR SCHOOLS. Hitting our goal here would give us tons of leverage in getting companies and organizations to sponsor future programs
We are also considering a subscription model for the content. In this case the museums would only pay for the programs they wanted to run.
But with either business model we chose, the entire system has some built-in advantages that will reduct the cost for museums, communities, and schools.
Economy-Of-Scale Since we are only creating one program for all of the Zeds everywhere, adding more museums and schools to the network actually reduces the cost of the program in a per/museum sense. For the most part, there will only be HW costs each time a new museum joins the network.
Remote Updates. We will be able to push new programs to Zeds electronically. It’s possible for us to do 5-6 per year, maybe more. This variety will give museums an added benefit for repeat visitors to the museum.
Hardware Quality. For hardware and support, we will be partnering with IDEUM, a company that has been creating digital museum exhibits for over 15 years. They produce the most beautiful, rugged, safe, and lasting digital products available. www.ideum.com
Design Quality. Artifact Design is the parent company for this project. It is a full-service, design driven production studio based in Atlanta, Ga. These guys are among the top design/production companies in the world. www.artifactdesign.com