In my country India and also around the world, many schools are understaffed and students find it difficult to get personalized attention. Our larger goal is to work towards ensuring students get all the help they need and science education is made more interesting and interactive with the help of virtual assistants like Alexa.
What it does
The main objective of our project is to power up science education in the classroom or home with the help of Alexa. With the help of Science Wizard, students, teachers and parents will be able to access hands on activities with all kinds of controls (start, stop and resume), science quizzes, debate prompts, thought experiments and scientific formula across Physics, Chemistry and Biology!
If you are a teacher, you can use Science Wizard to help make your classes more interesting with the science activities and scientific debate prompts. If you are a student, you can get help with your homework and expand your critical thinking skills with the quizzes and activities. If you are a parent, you can heave a sigh of relief! You don’t have to revisit Physics anymore, Alexa will help your child with their homework!
Science Wizard currently allows the user to:
->Access science activities across Physics, Chemistry and Biology!
The science activities are fun hands on experiments, most of which could easily be performed at home or in a school laboratory setting. The voice controls include standard features allowing you to say “next” to go to the next instruction or “previous” to go to the previous instruction. Your progress gets saved before the session closes. So you could just ask Alexa to resume from wherever you were last at when you reopen the skill.
->Access fun science quiz questions!
Students can access fun science questions to gauge their knowledge of various topics across physics, chemistry and mathematics! Answer questions and get points for write answers! How many questions do you think you can answer?
->Let Alexa help you organize debates in your classroom and make it more fun!
The debating feature allows Alexa to suggest a topic of scientific interest for debate. If you are a teacher, you can take Alexa to your classroom and let her suggest some debate prompts! Further she can help you keep track of time each team spends and at the end, to make things interesting, you can get her to declare the winner too!
->Get help with those tedious physics formulae!
Parents, you can now heave a sigh of relief! Alexa can now help your kids with their physics homework! Speed, Density or the equations of motion, the physics formula feature has you (and your kids) covered!
How I built it
Science Wizard is built with NodeJS hosted on AWS Lambda and uses AWS Dynamo DB for it's database purposes.
Challenges I ran into
Finding quality content and adding multiple features to the same skill. Use of state handlers perfectly has always been one of the toughest tasks in Alexa Development and this skill heavily depends on state handlers.
Accomplishments that I'm proud of
Making an Alexa Skill which has the potential of helping out many students, parents and teachers around the world.
What I learned
How to tackle a social problem with an innovative approach and a disruptive technology.
What's next for Science Wizard
In the longer run, we would like to work with all major stakeholders: teachers, school authorities, curriculum planners and most importantly students, to make Science Wizard a go-to solution for personalized education with a specific focus on STEM subjects and bring more engaging content to the skill and would also like to build a personalized feedback system and recommendation system that keeps track of a student's progress. Provide personalized lessons based on student progress.