by Amanda Trigiani
I must admit, I am obsessed with this game! Brain it on! is a physics game that encourages you to problem-solve to complete unique tasks. Each puzzle has multiple solutions, so you can get creative designing solutions by drawing shapes and lines in search of the most practical and efficient solution. If you are stuck, there are helpful hints, but they do require watching an ad first.
The app is compatible with Android and Apple and includes 330 levels that can be unlocked for free by earning stars in previous levels. You can play independently or compete with friends and compare solutions (which is interesting to see!). There are advertisements in between levels, which at times can be lengthy… but the app is free! You also have the option to purchase a version to remove ads, unlock hints, unlock levels early, and unlock the level editor. On the community screen, there are dozens of additional player-created free levels created each day.
The app provides feedback to the user based on the solutions they designed. Up to three stars are provided based on the efficiency of the solution (as seen in the grid image); there are also 18 specific achievements to complete.
In the classroom, Brain it On! can introduce physics concepts using a games-based learning approach for various age groups. The website can be used on the SMART Board or tablets where students play in pairs or groups to encourage teamwork and communication during the problem-solving process. Afterwards, the students could document their thinking and describe their solutions using physics concepts – for example, they can create a procedural breakdown on an app like Canva!
Another great feature is that the app can be used in a number of languages! This is ideal for French schools or courses. The simple, short instructions are even beneficial for beginner French speakers. English language learners could also benefit as they can still practice science concepts and learn English, or play in their native language.