💡 Inspiration

  • Due to COVID-19, working families have struggled to adapt to virtual work and learning environments.
  • Students are not receiving the same hands-on aspect of learning that often keeps them motivated and engaged.
  • These interactive, tangible experiences are central to STEM education and development, playing an integral role in getting these students excited about learning and understanding key concepts of STEM-based curriculum.
  • In order to provide the same level of engagement and understanding for students, we must ask, “How would you improve the American educational curriculum of STEM in high school?” Further, “how can we make remote learning interactive, simple, and accessible for all?”

🔬📦 What it does

  • iSTEM is a subscription service where students, parents, and teachers can schedule weekly STEM kit deliveries.
  • Users can enter the student’s interests, age group, and desired frequency of delivery. iSTEM will use this information to suggest deliveries that can be easily reviewed and edited by the user.
  • Once delivered, users can use the corresponding interactive walkthroughs, guides, and learning resources hosted on the iSTEM website.
  • It’s a solution that makes sense for the whole family, as well as for the classroom-Delivery makes it easy for students to access the right materials, and takes the toll off working parents. The online resources make it easy for students to understand and complete the activity. iSTEM provides the hands-on component of STEM learning with the ease of virtual, interactive walkthroughs.
  • Additionally, a portion of profits will be spent sending kits and physical learning resources to students in rural areas where access to education and the internet are severely limited, as well as to kids in NYCHA Housing where they can’t afford these kits.
  • Or you have the option to donate kits on weekly basis to a single kid or to a classroom.
  • Lastly, we have review/user feedback features implemented in each stage from kit delivery to virtual instruction, to ensure we are meeting our user’s needs.

Community

  • iSTEM brings science kits to motivate and engage all students taking STEM-related courses. Our iSTEM community has the opportunity to make donations to students or classes from communities that struggle to have access to WiFi or money. Also for every kit purchase, 10% of the proceeds go towards our donations set up for communities in need of our resources.

School & Education

  • iSTEM introduces a new way to science. Our science kits & virtual lesson allow for kids to gain the experiment/lab experience they are missing due to remote learning. However, when we return to in-person learning our kits can be purchase in a class bundle to make it easier for teachers to run labs in the class. When teachers are helping students that need more attention, other students can be using our virtual walkthroughs. This makes it easier for teachers to manage their classes either remotely or in-person. Especially if teachers are dealing with hybrid-learning ( having some students in-person and some remote) our kits & virtual help sync both students.

🔨 How we built it

Technologies Used

Google Docs & Draw

  • We used google docs during the ideating & brainstorming phase.
  • We used Google draw to map out features & MVPs.

Figma

  • We made the design system & branding on Figma (color, typography, etc.).
  • Then, We made wireframes.
  • Lastly, We made low & high-fidelity.

Design Process

  • Problem: During the pandemic, students are lacking the engagement necessary to be motivated and grasp STEM concepts.
  • Question (HMW): How might we improve the American educational curriculum of STEM in high school?
  • We will need to: Bring hands-on learning to all kids, remotely, despite their financial/housing situation.
  • Solution: A subscription service where students, parents, and teachers can schedule weekly STEM kit deliveries. Once delivered, users can use the corresponding interactive walkthroughs, guides, and learning resources hosted on the iSTEM website.
  • Impact: With school being remote for the time being it will allow students to feel like they are missing out on Lab portion of many STEM-based classes. They will find it easier to understand concepts they learn during class. We will also be able to provide free kits to students who won’t be able to afford our kits, bring our hands-on projects to all.
  • User Personas: See Slides
  • Main audience: High School Students & Parents, and STEM Teachers.
  • How our app meets the needs of the various audience: For students -interactive & hands-on learning experience to help them stay engaged. For parents -Provides an easy way to help their kids to learn STEM in an interactive and productive way. For teachers -provides a great outlet to get their students engaged & excited about STEM.
  • Design System: Used bright colors like orange, yellow, blue, teal, and gradients to engage users. Also used Among Us characters to relate with our target audience.

😤 Challenges we ran into

  • Finding teammates to create a project with.
  • Trying to learn code and implement my designs into code.
  • Working on the hack solo, as I'm a beginner.
  • Time constraints

🏆 Accomplishments that we're proud of

  • Completing the project on time despite the challenges stated above.
  • Completing all screens on time.
  • Making my prototype fully clickable.

📖 What we learned

  • We learned more about user personas & user research
  • We learned more about app design and UI
  • We learned about using my research to create the UX
  • We learned about design systems (typography, color, branding, etc.)
  • We learned a little bit about HTML & CSS even though we weren’t able to implement them during this hackathon

🚀 What's next for iSTEM

iSTEM does not & will not stop at the end of this hackathon! It will continue with the help of developers & investors. So if you, judge, or hackathon participant know anyone wanting to join in the creation of a STEM app, let me know! Here's our launch plan:

Part I:

  • Finalize platform and donation/educational functionalities.
  • Initiate outbound marketing and sales.
  • Leverage Gen Z & student ambassadors.

Part II

  • Pilot test in public high schools & home-schooled students
  • Integrate user feedback
  • Integrate new features
  • Monetize further

Key Tactics (will be used during the execution in both part I & II)

  • A/B testing of educational features
  • Gradual roll-out (test market)
  • Interactive user feedback cycles

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