Piper is a computer kit in which users build a computer and manually create circuits to play a game of Minecraft. The product is focused in a project-based learning collaboration model to teach the concepts of electronics and circuits through the game Minecraft. School leaders, teachers, or parents can purchase the kit for student use.
Each Piper toolkit comes with a Plywood case, a 7 inch LED screen, Raspberry Pi, USB Mouse, DIY Minecraft Controller, and a Powerbank. With these parts, users can either follow instructions to build or try out building the computer on their own.
Once the computer is assembled, students played a modified adventure map game of Minecraft. With feedback from the digital game, users manually manipulate the circuit board or are given directions on what new hardware to build to move up through the levels of the game.
For classroom use, Piper is designed to be used by two students at a time. It can be used to teach skills in STEM content areas, as well as teaching collaboration, problem solving and project-based learning.
For classroom use, a school leader or teacher can purchase Piper Block, which is a bulk kit that includes all the hardware and parts to make a computer. Pairs of students can reuse the same parts to make one computer. Piper Block contains a box of spare parts, storage accessories, and a multiport charger. The kit can be purchased one time for $999.00, which includes the kit as well as professional training for teachers.
A consumer version is also available for $269.00. This a smaller version of the bulk educator’s kit, and does not include spare parts, storage accessories, a multiport charger, or training.
WHO IS USING IT?
Students, from third grade and older can use this product, both at home and school. As of 2016, Piper has over 50,000 users. It is currently being used in 50 schools, in the classroom, enrichment and afterschool programs throughout the United States.
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