March 11, 2013 -- Submitted by Rensselear Polytechnic Institute, a reader from Chicago, who is affiliated with the site.
Where can you take a ride in a nanotube, climb the Periodic Table and build an atom in its simplest form? In NanoSpace, the Molecularium® Project’s online science “theme park,” where kids in 5th-8th grades are finding that science can be fun – and fascinating. The leading scientists from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute that brought us the memorable characters Oxy and Hydra in the Molecularium® Project’s Molecules to the Max! and Riding Snowflakes have just unveiled NanoSpace. This interactive, fun online environment is easily accessible for both the kids who play within it and the teachers who use the free educational curriculum in the classrooms. More than 25 games and animations entice kids to learn more about atoms and molecules in NanoSpace. Visitors can try to beat the clock in “Periodic Memory Game” and click-and-drag atoms to construct molecules in “Build’em.” Answer multiple-choice questions in Who wants to be a Quidecillionaire?, and hope the answer is correct before you fall down to the bottom rung again. Five new animations feature the Molecularium computer “Mel” talking to his young friends about atoms and molecules, polymers, and even understanding DNA as “The Software of Life.” NanoSpace is much more than a website; it is an online theme park designed to increase science literacy in children with all interests and backgrounds – not just those who have an existing passion for science. As our country faces a “quiet crisis” with STEM-related workforce development shortages, the Molecularium® Project’s latest initiative fosters new ways of teaching science to kids through engaging games and activities.