The Pearson-backed startup Alleyoop is bolstering its science content through new partnerships with NASA, National Geographic, National Science Foundation, Scientific Minds, Patrick JMT, Virtual Nerd, Adaptive Curriculum and Brightstorm.
Alleyoop is an adaptive learning platform for middle school and high school students with the goal of preparing teenagers for the curriculum shift that occurs in college.
Alleyoop first started out by focusing on math. Typically speaking, if a student misses a concept in Algebra I, then Algebra II will pose additional problems. Alleyoop’s system diagnoses where students need the most help and serves up the right content that allows them to understand a subject before moving on to the next one.
Content is delivered in the form of games, quiz questions and videos in an effort to match a variety of learning styles. Students complete “missions” and use virtual currency called “Yoops” as they go along, which seems to gamify the the whole experience.
Now, the platform is introducing new STEM content in collaboration with its heavy-hitting science partners. The new content will provide Alleyoop users with more complex questions, the opportunity to apply the scientific method and improve critical thinking skills. New subjects include earth and space science, life science, physical science, chemistry, biology, and physics.
“We think science is a really interesting way to start embedding some of the 21st century skills,” said Gerard LaFond, V.P. of marketing for Pearson Education who owns the Alleyoop brand.
As the Curiosity Mars rover captures the attention of young people and the nation gushes over the red planet and mohawked NASA controllers, it seems that science is becoming cool again. The timing seems perfect for an online learning platform like Alleyoop to team up with NASA and other scientific organizations.