If you ask most people in the hockey world, they’ll tell you that Joe Thornton thinks about the game on another level. Thornton looks at the ice and sees not just where his teammates are, but where they’re going to be in relation to their opponents. He knows what’s going to happen, before it happens. It’s why he’s a future Hall of Famer and it’s why he’s ninth on the NHL’s all-time assists list.
While most of us will never have the skills that Jumbo has, or any of the other Sharks’ players for that matter, we now have a chance to think like them. From now until March 22, The Tech Museum of Innovation in San Jose will feature an exhibit that allows you to think like a pro hockey player.
The Innovation on Ice: Code Teal exhibit allows users to make hockey plays come alive using a drag and drop coding program. Players will create a code that makes a puck move across the ice of a small Shark Tank — complete with boards and advertisements. If the code works, the red light flashes and it’s a good goal.
The exhibit debuted on Feb. 28 with the help of SJ Sharkie and Joonas Donskoi. Both worked with visitors to craft goal scoring scenarios.
Innovation on Ice: Code Teal is the final exhibit of a multi-year deal between the Sharks Foundation and The Tech. The two teamed up to create exhibits that would teach visitors to The Tech about the links between hockey and science. Visitors have had the chance to use engineering and problem-solving skills to explore the science behind hockey first hand.
A previous exhibit, Innovation on Ice: Zamboni Design Challenge, allowed guests to design a wind-powered vehicle out of reusable materials. The vehicle was then placed on a mini Sharks’ ice and used to teach visitors about friction, weight distribution and the importance of material selection.
Even if you can’t make it to The Tech before March 22, you can still have a chance to think like Thornton or any of the other Sharks. The Tech will keep the Innovation on Ice exhibits in its rotation of exhibits for fans to enjoy for months to come.
The interactive museum also features other sports-themed tech and engineering activities designed to teach kids STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) education.
The Tech Museum of Innovation is open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. seven days a week. For complete hours, visit The Tech’s website.