Schell Games and Thames & Kosmos Announce New 2D Version of the Award-Winning Happy Atoms Chemistry Learning Tool


Schell Games and science toy and kit manufacturer Thames & Kosmos today announced the launch of a puzzle-based 2D version of its popular Happy Atoms interactive learning tool. The new, lower-cost alternative is available for purchase now.

Launched in November 2016 and originally funded by the ED/IES SBIR program, Happy Atoms has won numerous awards from both educational and technology organizations including The Parents’ Choice Awards, Auggie Awards, and KAPi Awards. The new version of the set replaces the 3D plastic models with 50 puzzle pieces representing the 16 basic elements and electron bond extenders, which can be combined to build thousands of molecules that can be scanned and examined using the same free Happy Atoms app that accompanies the 3D version.

Happy Atoms was really a watershed moment for us five years ago in terms of developing educational games and experiences,” said Schell Games CEO Jesse Schell. “But during the pandemic, we helped an educator develop a paper-based version to make the tool more accessible to her students working at home. From there, we knew we had to make this affordable puzzle set available to everyone.”

To help create a puzzle-based version, Schell Games once again turned to renowned educational developer Thames & Kosmos, which has published more than 250 unique science kits across 13 categories over the past 20 years.

Happy Atoms was a tremendous experience and partnership the first time, so this project was like visiting an old friend,” said Ted McGuire, president of Thames & Kosmos. “Accessibility is one of the most important parts of furthering a child’s interest in the sciences, so to be able to mirror the 3D model experience without losing any of the educational value is a real triumph.”

The kit, which will retail at $22.95 MSRP, also contains a bonus 3D water molecule (one oxygen atom and two hydrogen), as well as a quick start manual. The free-to-download Happy Atoms app, which is available on iOS, Amazon, and Android smartphones and tablets, uses image recognition technology to identify and assemble different molecules.

“This year we celebrate our 200th anniversary as a company and the 100th anniversary of our first chemistry set, so it’s only fitting that we release one of the most innovative chemistry learning tools of the last 200 years,” said Thames & Kosmos CEO Andrew Quartin. “Educational chemistry sets have certainly changed over the last two centuries, with necessary safety laws limiting the number of chemicals and other materials these learning tools can contain. But, the subject of chemistry is no less complex. With the Happy Atoms system, we’ve been able to teach advanced chemistry concepts and atomic modeling in a simple, hands-on, and completely safe environment. With Happy Atoms 2D, we’re able to do this more affordably than ever.”

Happy Atoms 2D is available for purchase on Amazon and at specialty toy stores nationwide, alongside the original three-dimensional Happy Atoms Intro Set, Complete Set, and Educator Classroom Bundles. For more information, visit the Happy Atoms website or view the press kit.