Interactive Maker Projects

The idea behind the HyperDuino system is simple: use the physical curriculum-related models that students are already making as the basis for a "maker" experience and interconnect them, using the Arduino and a Chrome browser extension, to student-made and existing digital media on a Chromebook or other laptop computer.

Interactive Maker Projects

Many student projects in elementary, junior high and high school grades can be greatly enhanced with the addition of interactive media. For example the volcano project shown below has an LED light that illuminates when the student is talking about that part of the project in a video.

Interactive Maker Projects bring physical projects that are unchanged from they way that they were  done years ago into today's world of digital interactivity, and that can now provide a great introduction to the maker movement, the Do It Yourself credo, and an introduction to the logic of programming.

Interative Maker Projects support STEM and STEAM, and can be correlated with Common Core Standards,  ISTE NETS, NGSS and many other curriculum standards.

Additionally, students gain confidence and self-esteem, and interactive maker projects are very supportive of differerentiated learning approaches.

If you are looking for ways to improve your implementation of project-based learning, interactive maker projects are a great way to further the achievement of your objectives.

Photo from Arduino Lesson 9. Sensing Light

at the Adafruit website.


Interactive maker projects are the simplest and best way to start experiencing the maker movement by linking existing and student-created digital content to traditional physical school projects.  

Teachers, parents, and even experienced makers will be delighted by just how easy the HyperDuino makes it to be successful in creating fun projects that are gratifying and motivating for further explorations and learning, and best of all, actually related to the school curriculum!

There are two key parts to the HyperDuino photo.

The first is that you don't need a breadboard and extra resistors to set up the LEDs and touch sensors. (The "breadboard" on the right is the plastic board with lots of holes in it, so named because early electronics experimenters used an actual wooden kitchen bread-cutting board to build projects with thumbtacks, wires and their components)

The second idea is slightly more subtle, and just as important. When looking at any other Arduino tutorial kit or device, think of the question, "How do I actually get the sensors and lights into my project?"

Look at the photo above with the breadboard, and think about what you would do next to actually implement those LEDs and sensors into a real project.  It's not straight-forward or even particularly easy.  And in a classroom setting with lots of students and projects going on at the same moment it can be overwhelming.

The system shown on the left is the answer with the HyperDuino. The easy-connect cables of the HyperDuino and simple sockets for each of the LEDs and sensors provide easy placement directly in your project.

With the HyperDuino, project building and further experimentation is fun and efficient!

The HyperDuino shield is now in its 2nd generation version with many improvements, including 12 true toiuch sensors and other features. If you're interested in the technical details of the HyperDuino hardware and software, click here for information on the changes and features.

"The HyperDuino does for the maker movement what HyperStudio did for hypermedia: it makes it possible for everyone, regardless of age and experience, to create curriculum-related interactive maker projects."

- Roger Wagner, designer of the HyperDuino

The HyperDuino Board + Arduino

The HyperDuino board combined with the Arduino eliminates the need for a breadboard and extra resistors, etc. that would otherwise be required.

With the HyperDuino, you only need this:

Instead of this

Using the HyperDuino for Chrome app, you only need this

Instead of this

Photo of the HyperDuino and

easy-connect rainbow connector with LEDs

The HyperDuino and the Logic of Programming

The HyperDuino app for the Chrome browser eliminates the need for coded scripting to make something happen in the model, or to react to touch sensors. Students can learn the logic of programming by setting up the conditional actions of touch response, video playback, and even lights that turn on during specified parts of a video or other digital media displayed in the browser.

So you can see this:

Compared to only seeing this:

Above all, it's not actually about the HyperDuino, but rather what it makes possible: the interconnection of student-created media content with student-made physical models.

The HyperDuino App for the Chrome browser

The HyperDuino is an extension for the Chrome browser that lets students connect videos and other media on their Chromebooks to physical projects that they've made as part of their regular curriculum. The HyperDuino piggy-back board for the Arduino eliminates the need for a breadboard and extra resistors, etc.. that would otherwise be required.

The HyperDuino app for the Chrome browser eliminates the requirement to learn coding before you can even turn on a single LED.  Now, using the Chrome browser and the HyperDuino app, you can associate any time frame within a YouTube video with lights (LEDs) on your model.  And at the same time, touching a sensor on your model can play back any part of the main video, or even clips from entirely different videos, making them all part of the same project - your project!

Here is the same YouTube video and volcano project demonstrated on an Acer C720 Chromebook.

Students can also choose different "personalities" for their HyperDuino, and use it to go further with programming and coding (using 3rd party tools like ScratchX for Arduino, Snap4Arduino, mBlock and others), learning more about electronics and robotics, all the way to Arduinos in orbit with ArduSat!