Steve Zahler has loved playing pinball since his youth. Currently ranked 38th by the International Flipper Pinball Association, he's passionate about the game as a way to engage kids in a type of gaming that's somewhere between analog and digital. He started teaching his own kids to play when they were just babies, and today he's certain that the more they practice, the more focus and curiosity they'll be able to bring to their other schoolwork.
Pinball is a simple game, he explains, and anyone can pick it up easily, but it also requires strategy and an understanding of the dynamics of the play field. Toward this end, he developed a unique education program at the Modern Pinball NYC that he co-founded. Adhering to their in-school science curricula, Zahler works with teachers to create a hands-on field trip for students, where they open up a pinball machine to examine the changing technology, electromagnets, circuits, electricity, and physical properties operating on the play field. It's a way of hiding science in the game, he explains. And as predicted, once the students understand the properties at work, playing becomes a lot more focused. . . and a lot more fun.Music: Incredible by C418