When Gabriel and Flynn found out that Curiscope were sending them a Virtuali-Tee to try out they were thrilled - we'd seen them when we visited the Science Museum over the summer and they'd looked fantastic. Gabriel is obsessed with science so this was right up his street.
Curiscope is an augmented reality tee and a free app so that kids (and adults) can learn about the human body, on the human body. As Curiscope explain on their website, "Inspiring curious kids to develop a love for Science. Our beautifully designed Augmented Reality products allow children to explore the world around them in ways they never thought possible".
The tee arrived while the boys were at school and it was the first thing they wanted to do when they got home. I'd downloaded the app already so Flynn put the tee on and Gabriel got busy with my phone. Thankfully the app didn't need any setting up so they could get started right away - they just had to go into the app and point the camera at the tee to see their insides realistically depicted on screen.
Gabriel was fascinated to see (what looked like) Flynn's heart pumping away and started to point out all the body components. He tried hard to explain the respiratory system to his brother but Flynn was more interested in seeing his intestines and where his poo travelled downwards! Flynn used selfie mode to take a look at himself and then Gabriel took a turn. They also dug out their Science Museum VR goggles to make it even more immersive. The app is simple to use and the boys were able to navigate around it easily without any help.
Together, Gabriel and Flynn spent ages exploring the body system. They could see the heart and lungs, rib cage and pelvic bone, the veins, and the digestive system. Key organs are labelled and there are plenty 360 degree views. The boys were able to click on organs to find out more about them as well as venturing inside the blood stream, lungs and intestine. Gabriel measured his heart rate and saw it reflected in the heart on screen. Everything was incredibly lifelike - I was as captivated as the boys.
Curiscope really is the most fun the boys have had learning biology and it was fab to see Flynn taking a genuine interest in anatomy. Gabriel thinks it's very cool and is asking if he can have his friends over for a science party, so they can all play with it together (you can connect the app to the TV). Flynn wants to take the tee into school so he can show his class so I'll be talking to his Head - it would be an invaluable class resource.
The technology is brilliant and while the app doesn't have insights on everything inside the human body, there's a great deal here to entertain and educate. Hopefully the app will continue to update and more components added to it - we'd love to see the muscular system too!
Once the boys have lost interest in the tee (as they do all toys) I'm planning to put it away and bring it out in six months or so. It's entertaining for them now but it's going to be great as they get older and head into secondary school. When not in use the tee can be worn and washed like a normal top, but we're going to look after ours so we can enjoy it for years to come. We love this product and whole-heartedly recommend it.