Experience sustainability - digitally, interactively, innovatively

What can we do today in order to continue living a good life on our planet tomorrow? This is what children can find out for themselves at home with their families or at school with their classes - with the ProtAct17 app.

Guiding children to protect the environment (Protect) and to act in line with the 17 Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations (Act) – this is the idea behind the ProtAct17 app. Targeting children aged eight and older, the app provides knowledge in an interactive, age-appropriate manner. It sparks curiosity and a spirit of inquiry through both virtual and real-life experiments. The app addresses current and future environmental, economic, and societal challenges. Most importantly, it shows young researchers their own - albeit small - possibilities for action.


These topics are waiting to be discovered by young researchers in the app:


Eight subject areas with links to children's everyday lives
8 thematic areas can be discovered interactively: Air, water, biodiversity, food, shopping, waste, transport, and energy. Each topic has the following content components with exciting information, tricky tasks, and cool do-it-yourself experiments.

Did you know?
Here you will find lots of interesting and important basic information on the topic. The perfect start into a new subject area.

Interactive game
There is one task per topic that combines learning, fun and interaction - a quiz, a matching game or an either/or riddle

Dr. Blubber Experiment
Here, the children become researchers themselves. A thematically appropriate cool experiment is waiting to be tried out in a virtual lab.

Instructions for hands-on experiment
This component contains step-by-step instructions for experiments in the "real" world that can easily be carried out at home or at school.

Sustainability goals
A little game awaits the ambitious researchers here. The aim is to find the sustainability goals that best fit the respective topic from those displayed. Then, for each goal, there is an explanation how the goal is linked to your current research topic.

Now it is your turn!
Everyone can play an active role in protecting our planet. Many small steps are also important - we present some of them here and are looking for "accomplices"!

Navigation via the menu
There are also 5 icons at the bottom of the app to help you navigate through the app. Topics: Way back to the topic selection.

  Goals: a small encyclopedia in which you can read all about the 17 SDGs of the United Nations.

  Game: a tower building game on the 17 sustainability goals. For each goal, you select suitable to-do's and earn building blocks to stack.

  Achievements: show the achieved score and have surprises in store for each topic.

For 8 major subject areas (air, water, biodiversity, food, shopping, waste, transport and energy), basic knowledge is provided, and tasks are set that the children can complete independently within the app. The topics can be worked on independently of each other and are suitable as a basis or supplement for interdisciplinary and skills-oriented lessons. The app can be used flexibly - several topics or just individual tasks can be covered. The "Reset app" button in the side menu makes it possible to reset the processing status of tasks, points and successes to zero so that new students can use the app on the same device.

Which tasks can I find in the App?

The range of tasks within the app covers three areas: Knowledge transfer (reading / listening), interactive, digital tasks (get active in the app!), tasks for everyday life (get active outside the app!). Once a topic has been selected, the following tasks are available:

  • Did you know? (reading/listening): It is recommended that each topic is started with the audio slideshow as a knowledge base.
  • Interactive, digital exercise  (get active in the app!): Children can put their knowledge to the test in one task per topic or guess the correct answer in a fun way. There are three different types of tasks: Quiz (10 questions), matching game (10 questions), either/or riddle (10 questions).
  • Dr. Blubber's Experiment (get active in the app!): In Dr. Blubber's virtual lab, children can carry out a thematically appropriate experiment. The experiments are interactive, self-explanatory and encourage students to learn through research.
  • Ideas for experiments (get active outside the app!): Children will find step-by-step instructions for their own experiments on the topic. These experiments can be carried out together in class or at home. Materials are required for this, which are listed at the beginning of the experiment.
  • Sustainability Goals (get active within the app!): Sustainability goals that are particularly well suited to the respective topic are selected in a playful way and then briefly explained. The somewhat more abstract goals, such as number 16 (peace, justice, and strong institutions) and 17 (partnerships to achieve the goals), along with the highly overarching goal number 4 (high-quality education), are not individually included here because they are equally relevant for all topics. You are also welcome to try to find other suitable sustainability goals for the respective topics in discussion with the students!
  • It's your turn! (get active outside the app!): The children are given either an assignment or a checklist for carrying out an activity that allows them to contribute something sustainable to the topic. This can be done either alone or together in class.

In addition to the tasks, there are also two off-topic activities on the 17 Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations. These can be found in the main menu.

  • Goals (reading/listening) All 17 Sustainable Development Goals and the idea behind them are collected in a small encyclopedia.
  • Game (get active in the app!): A tower-building game awaits the students here - they have to get as high as possible with the SDG building blocks. They will receive the first 10 cubes directly from Dr. Blubber, while the others must be earned in a quiz. The quiz questions refer to the To Do's, which can be found on the official website of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals for Germany, in order to show very concrete and simple options for action for each individual.


In September 2015, all member states adopted the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development at the United Nations summit in New York. In doing so, the international community expressed its conviction that global challenges can only be solved by working together. At the heart of the agenda is an ambitious list of 17 goals for sustainable development - the Sustainable Development Goals.

Sustainable Development Goals icons. Which create framework for sustainable business practices at the economic, social and environmental levels

Even children of primary school age are aware of the global challenges of our time - be it climate change, poverty, hunger, inequality, or war - through the media or directly in their everyday lives. By dealing with the 17 sustainability goals - explained in a playful and age-appropriate way - the children recognize the complexity, the global interdependence and the mutual dependencies of the various goals and fields of action. At the same time, these very abstract and "big" goals are broken down in the app into many small "To Do's" for the individual child. Away from the overarching level of national or global politics and towards the child's own ability to act - this is how the sustainability goals can become tangible and concrete.

The ProtAct 17 sustainability app is a new building block in BASF's commitment to education, with which we want to get children and young people interested in science, but also support teachers in designing exciting and contemporary lessons. The app is contemporary in two respects: in terms of content, it picks up on "the" future topic of sustainability, which is of great concern to us not only as a company, but also as a society and as private individuals. At the same time, it does so in a digital and interactive way that meets modern requirements for knowledge transfer and acquisition. 

The agency KIDS Interactive GmbH was commissioned to design and implement the app. As an agency for young media, it is based at the KinderMedienZentrum Erfurt and has acquired great expertise in the development of interactive learning and gaming applications since it was founded in 2007.

Researching, compiling and selecting the content was a multi-stage and intensive process. The guiding principle was the idea of giving children a feeling for the dynamic development and complexity of the topic of sustainability, as many issues cannot be captured in the categories of "right" or "wrong". The decisive factor for the selection and content of the 8 overarching topics was the proximity to the children's everyday lives and world of experience. However, this was based on the conviction that sustainability is more than just a list of prohibitions that make life uncomfortable and stressful.

You can find a comprehensive list of all the sources used - sorted by topic - in the side menu of the app.

The educational service provider Two4Science, which has particular expertise in the conception and didactic communication of "hands-on science", also provided us with expert advice in the development of the content.