Nintendo’s Labo kits for the handheld Switch platform have always had a STEM foundation, which is why the company’s latest announcement makes complete sense. Nintendo is partnering with the Institute of Play to introduce Labo kits into elementary school classrooms around the country.
Labo kits allow users to become amateur inventors. The Variety Kit, which Nintendo will provide to classrooms along with a Switch, will allow students to create a fishing rod, piano, RC car and more. “We are always on the lookout for new tools and technologies that combine the best of learning with the spirit of play, and in Nintendo Labo we found an inspiring and innovative approach in both areas,” said Arana Shapiro, Co-Executive Director of the Institute of Play, in a release. “Teachers in the pilot program are already seeing the natural fit for Nintendo Labo in the classroom, and now we can bring that dynamic to schools across the country.”
The program is currently in the pilot stage that’s being tested in New York schools. The Institute of Play is taking advantage of the pilot to develop a teacher’s guide for the Labo that will allow any elementary school classroom to use a Labo and Switch for STEM/STEAM learning. Once the pilot is complete, the program will expand to about 100 schools across the US. To be considered for the wider program, schools can apply at the Institute of Play’s website.