I've started looking at Bamzooki again as I'm interested in seeing how primary schools could be addressing the area of modelling and simulation in the classroom. We know from Estyn (school inspectorate), that many primary schools are not covering the area of 'Finding and Analysing' adequately, with teachers having difficulty in confidently teaching data bases, data handling, and modelling and simulation. With the current focus in Wales on what it means for a pupils to be "digitally competent" or "digitally literate", it is important that the weakness in these area is addressed. Exciting, engaging and challenging tools such as Bamzooki could be one way to help to address this.
In about 2011 I stopped doing much with it as the software didn't seem to work on the version of the Windows operating system that the majority of our schools were using. Over the weekend however I downloaded the software and have successfully installed it on Windows 7. I've even tried it out on Windows 8 and it seems to be working without a problem. Interestingly the software has seemed to have had an update to its interface since the last time I've used too.
Bamzooki very much fits into the current drive for pupils to be creators, not consumers. The user has to design, build and test their 'Zook', which is challenging, but very engaging. As I said in a previous post, I class this product as "struggleware", nothing is really given on a plate to the user. They have to work out what they should do and solve the problems and challenges that may arise. Bamzooki is not all shiny and glossy; it does not work on your iPad. Yes it's been around for nearly ten years, but if you really want to challenge your pupils, get them thinking and problem solving in a 3D modelling environment, in my opinion you still can't go far wrong with trying this out with your pupils.