Now that's teaching with Portals!

A high school physics teacher is using the Portal 2 Puzzle Maker to create practical demonstrations of how physics works.

(Screenshot by Michelle Starr/CNET Australia)

In collaboration with Valve, several teachers are using the Portal 2 Puzzle Maker to teach maths, physics, language and game design.

Cameron Pittman is a high school physics and chemistry teacher in Nashville, Tennessee. He's also a gamer — and believes, as many teachers are coming to, that games are a powerful teaching tool.

Rather than waiting for the tools to come to him, however, Pittman has been working with Valve and using the Portal 2 Puzzle Maker — that is, the game's in-game puzzle-creation tool — to create practical physics lessons for his students.

Pittman, however, is just one of a few teachers developing lessons within the game in collaboration with Valve. Lisa Castenada teaches middle school maths in Washington State, and Steve Isaacs teaches middle school game design.

The program is called Teach with Portals, and allows teaching institutions and students to download a free educational version of Steam and use it to create lesson plans and lessons using Portal 2.

Pittman's lesson plan can be found here, and some of his demo lessons on his website, Physics with Portals, here.

And just because, here's Pittman using Portals to explore the concept of terminal velocity:


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