With Intro to Math 2.0, then, we made the decision to drastically scale back the woodgrain, reducing the importance of the shadows (which cast a wide view on the “real world”), concentrating almost exclusively on a new set of assumptions. These are assumptions that we felt our learners would be making when they engaged with our app because we knew they would be ready for them.

Image: Courtesy of Montessorium

This generation is growing up with an entirely different set of technological expectations. In a way, up until this precise historical, should we say, cultural juncture, we wonder if the world itself was ready to embrace what has been called the “authentically digital.” Adults needed the training wheels to take reality into digital; will children need support to translate concepts they’ve learned digital into the real world, now that the two share fewer visual cues?

Whenever we wonder if children will be able to effortlessly make the same leap when the digital world has so little resemblance to its concrete counterpart, we are reminded of Ives comments on the transparent nature of the design, “The lovely thing about translucency is you’re not sitting there going, ‘Where have I just been taken?’ because your world is still there.”

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