Nathan Kimball loves making tools and curricula for students to explore science, and in the process of this, to better understand how students learn. One exciting line of projects, Sensing Science, is revealing how very young students—kindergarten through second grade—can develop sophisticated insights into molecular dynamics through the use of modeling and probes. Another project, GRASP, for which Nathan is Co-PI, is researching how students’ use of gesture to control simulations can help build explanations of phenomena that have unseeable mechanisms such as heat transfer with molecular motions or the reason for the seasons. Nathan has been developing educational technology and inquiry science curriculum since 1987. He is an early proponent of real-time representation of data from probes and the power of sense-making in science through hands-on experience combined with visualizations and multiple representations. He holds a degree in applied electronics from Harvard University, and degrees in cello performance from Oberlin College (with a double degree in physics) and Syracuse University. He performs regularly with a local orchestra.
Q&A with Nathan
- Do you have an unusual hobby or interest?
- Playing Bach cello suites
- What was your childhood stuffed animal?
- Floppy Dog. My grandmother made him for me.
- Favorite song or piece of music?
- Schubert B-flat Piano Trio