TEACHERS' PAGE >> What is Engineering Interact?


Engineering Interact is a resource produced by the Department of Engineering at the University of Cambridge. The site aims to teach children about science in a fun and interesting way, and promote the subject of engineering. It is aimed at 9-11 year olds (i.e. upper Key Stage 2).


Why is this site different from others and why should I use it?

This site covers all of the Physical Processes area of the National Curriculum for England. The material is presented in an innovative game format. The game is a motivating tool for children to learn key scientific concepts in a fun environment.

The detective story games link with highly interactive science modules (such as "Light Sources and Light Rays" and "Friction"). These modules are stand-alone and can also be used without the game environment. For example, you could use individual modules on a data projector or interactive white-board for demonstrating a concept to the whole class. If you want to use the teaching materials without the encompassing games, go to the Resource Bank.

An elimination procedure at the end of each game tests how well the children have learnt the material.

Information about engineering applications is then presented by extending the science the children have just learnt.


How to use the games

The games are self-explanatory. It is envisaged that the children will work either in pairs or on their own at a computer, or as a whole group in front of an interactive whiteboard or data projector. If your class has a large range in reading ability, we recommend that good readers are paired up with not-so-good readers.


Teacher quick-start

  • Use the Resource Bank to browse the science modules used in the games.
  • If you want to take a quick look at a game to see how it runs, then you will need to use Cheat Mode. In this mode, you can quickly navigate without the normal constraints that stop pupils from randomly clicking-through the game without learning anything. To enter Cheat Mode type "teach1" as your user name in the Log-In box at the start of the game. You can view all the games available now by following the games link.

Technical specifications

The games require Macromedia's Flash Player, version 6 or above. If you do not have this installed, you should automatically be told when you try to run the game. You will then have the option to dowload it for free, which takes only a few moments.

Note that the games run over the web, so a permanent conncetion to the internet is needed for the duration of the game. However, you can choose to download one or more of the games. For more information on why you would want to do this, and how, click here.