Tag Archives: virtual worlds

Immersive Education and Virtual Worlds – eT@lking in Review

What an intriguing and interesting session this was. Jane Talyor shared her experiences at the Immersive Education Conference in Boston in June 2012. She shared cutting edge use of technology, augmented reality and virtual worlds and more and its potential in education. Jane and Mic Lowne, who moderated this session teach at  Wooranna Park PS with amazing learning spaces. Below are some of the links shared.

Here is a link to the recording.  Shamblesguru, one of the participants from Chiang Mai, Thailand shared many useful links as well.

From Jane Taylor

Youtube videos

From Shamblesguru

  1. Apps for android devices
  2. Chirp sings information to another iDevice
  3. Virtual Student Fair
  4. Augmented Reality App – one there will teach nutrition
  5. Teach Digital and the The 10 Cube Challenge: Using Virtual Worlds To Foster Creative Thinking
  6. EcoMuve by Havard
  7. Wonderland
  8. Link to Sim on a Stick – Virtual Worlds on a USB stick
  9. Free Augmented Reality App 3D Spacecraft from NASA
  10. Scoopit Teacher CPD Online

From the chat

  • Simon shared Cloud Party Time (requires Facebook login)
  • Learn Scratch Resources

Tech Talk Tuesdays and eT@lking – this week’s sessions

Tech Talk Tuesdays – Tuesday, August 24th 3:45 -4:45pm (Melbourne, Australia gmt+10)

Topic:  ‘LEEP’ing into Leadership- Students as ICT Mentors

Synopsis: LEEP stands for Lodgers’ E-learning Extension and is a special program offered to high achieving students at Berwick Lodge Primary School, Melbourne, Australia. One of the main goals of the program is to enable students to become ICT leaders in their classroom, modelling and supporting their peers and teachers to utilise ICT skills that enhance learning. The students who participate in the program have lessons in advanced ICT skills and are supported to develop the social and interpersonal skills necessary for leadership and peer mentoring.
This is the second year of the program and it is gathering momentum as the students develop confidence and have experience in the role. Equally teachers are becoming more comfortable and adept at utilizing the ICT student experts in their room.
Link to the session:- https://sas.elluminate.com/site/external/launch/dropin.jnlp?sid=2007026&password=techtalktuesdays
About out presenter:- Lois Smethurst has been a Primary Teacher for more than twenty years and a Leading Teacher in ICT for the last 10. Her qualifications include Masters of Information Technology in Education, Intel Master Trainer, Peer Coach in ICT and Graduate Diploma in Computing. Lois works at Berwick Lodge Primary School in Victoria Australia.
Lois has been presented with the Victoria Information Technology Award for “Most Outstanding Use of Technology in a Government School” and the Gippsland Learning Technology award for “Best Use of Learning Technologies in a Primary School.” In 2004 and 2005 she was a member of the “ICT Achievers” writing team for integrating ICT, Digital Learning Objects and Kahootz.
Her interests are education in ICT rich environments for teachers and students, web2.0 tools and technologies, global collaboration and constructivist learning. Her current role is in e_Learning extension for highly able students and whole school leadership in ICT. Lois has been working on a number of projects since starting at BerwickLodge Primary School, but in particular, developing a school wide blogging culture, global connections using Skype and using digital technologies to enhance learning through oral language. Most recently the students at BLPS were the only Australian school to participate in the Flatclassrooms Global Debate – Eracism.

eT@lking: Wednesday August 25th, 8-9pm  (Melbourne, Australia gmt+10)

Topic: Second Life Workshop

This class will give you a visual tour about how to use Second Life ® (SL) and find interesting places using your avatar. Marian Heddesheimer will show you how to teleport to interesting places in SL, how you move your avatar and get information about the virtual world. The class will start as presentation (using desktop sharing) to show you my own view in the SL Viewer Version 2. The second part will be a live hands-on tour directly in SL where you need to start up the SL Viewer along with the Elluminate virtual classroom.
– How to find interesting places
– How to teleport
– Walking, Running, Flying around
– Getting information
– Finding schools and classes in SL
– visiting an SL school in world
Prerequisites: You need to have an account at Secondlife already. If you don’t have a (free) account yet, please create one before you come into class at: https://join.secondlife.com/?lang=en-US Please make sure you will be able to run the SL viewer along with the Elluminate virtual classroom to take part of the second part of this workshop. To do this, your computer needs to have enough power to handle both windows side by side. Usually a fast Windows desktop computer with a DSL-1000 Internet connection will be sufficient.
This class will give you a visual tour about how to use Second Life ® (SL) and find interesting places using your avatar.
Link to the session
About our presenter: Marian Heddesheimer Teaching in SL since 2007 (formerly head of scripting dept. at Academy of Second Learning). Currently I’m selling scripting tutorials in world and doing freelance work with scripting and teaching in SL.

Making the Impossible Possible: Implementing a Virtual Worlds Program in a Traditional School Setting

Innovative and determined Lucy Barrow gave a fascinating presentation and insight into the uptake of Virtual World Environments in a traditional school, Ballarat Grammar, Victoria, Australia where she is teaching. She shared her knowledge, experience and student outcomes and amazed us with what has been achieved within 3 months. Great support was shown by @jokay from JodaydiaGrid and  Bron Stuckey the facilitator and co-ordinator for Quest Atlantis. Listen to the recording  Here is Lucy’s slideshare presentation

From the chat came the following:-

  • indeed.. things move fast in virtual worlds ;).. even the snails 😉
  • virtual worlds in education are slower to get picked up than other technology, don’t you think?
  • You’re correct – the literature shows this.  It’s had greater take up at tertiary levels
  • Quest Atlantis http://www.QuestAtlantis.org
  • http://quest-atlantis-teaching.wikispaces.com/
  • QA is such a brilliant starting point for schools.. woot Bron and the QA team
  • It is FREE to use, train and implement for students aged 9 15 years old
  • Next QA teacher induction begins Monday August 23rd
  • http://atlantis.crlt.indiana.edu/site/pd_list Asia-Pacific Registration Code: 156257
  • all the teachers i know who have done QA training have raved to me about how good it is
  • Great that students feel safe – recognise this as an important element of virtual worlds
  • BronStuckey: We have filters, live chat monitors and send teachers transcripts of exemplary chat as well as breaking rules – it becomes the teachable moment to counsel students about their behaviour
  • I think seeing virtual worlds as a continuum of learning is a VERY healthy attitude – use different worlds K-12
  • jokay: Sadly Linden Lab announced that the Teen Grid will close shortly
  • Quest Atlantis is not heavy on bandwidth once the graphics have downloaded – they cache on your client computer.
  • Opensimulator is an open source platform… it was originally developed based on the Linden Labs codes.. but has developed alot since then..
  • jokay: At this stage I always recommend using a reputable opensimulator hosting service – as they have experience in balancing the load, managing updates and most importantly backing up the content created by users
  • jokaydiaGRID now also offers sims for educators… ReactionGRID is our technical host … http://jokaydia.com
  • can also IM chat in RG via iPad or iPhone
  • one of my AZ colleagues did some fantastic things with teens in Teen Second Life this past year and is now moving to Reaction Grid. http://pesdisland.blogspot.com/
  • you can watch Lucy’s session at the jokaydia Unconference, as well as Sue Gregory and a great seesion on WoW @ http://onlinevents.co.uk/library.html
  • Lucy’s session is @ http://livestre.am/1pmB
  • Jokaydia Unconference also has kids talking about leadership opportunities in virtual worlds like Quest Atlantis
  • jokay: Absolutely agree.. watching kids work together inworld is truly awesome… it NEVER gets old 😉
  • Rita Ellul I am blown away that students can do this with out hours spent liearning how to use the tools in the first place – kids are amazing!  But it’s an indication of the quality of the tools too.
  • Bron Stuckey Yes the really transformative learning happens when the kids design, build, create activity inworld to demonstrate their learning – 3D solutions to challenges.
  • jokay: great point lucy – you can really easily scaffold the process – starting with objects kids can use and customise thru to them creating it all themselves
  • Rita Ellul: Great idea about scaffolding.  Could also help  allay anxiety for teachers who may want to give it a go but are concerned about time and skill.
  • BronStuckey: Kids can learn building in a flash – take a look at these projects that ran inside a week where kids from multiple schools cam together online to build a solution to a world problem like the oil spill http://quest-atlantis-teaching.wikispaces.com/Quest+Atlantis+as+a+Summer+Camp+or+Club – look at the video half way down the page.
  • jokay: Woot for Tweeps… follow the #virtualworlds, #secondlife, #reactiongrid and #jokaydia tags for more info
  • jokay: You can watch lots of great machinimas on youtube peggy search for Ramapo Island to start
  • ISTE info here – http://www.iste.org/Content/NavigationMenu/Membership/Member_Networking/ISTE_Second_Life.htm
  • jokay: here here.. working in virtual worlds is both super challenging and super rewarding.. people like Lucy and Steve are doing brilliant work and tis awesome to be part of the VWedu network with them! 😉
  • http:krunchd.com/bgsvirtualworlds
  • http://delicious.com/lucybarrow/bgsvirtualworlds
  • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ojbWGpl7bTc
  • incredibly exciting stuff!! you covered so much in such a short time Lucy!
  • Part of the EduSim project
  • Rich’s blog – http://roots.greenbush.us/
  • okay: In my experience the vast majority of kids in virtual worlds are pretty well behaved.. we dont see a lot of problems – particularly when positive codes of conduct are established early on
  • BronStuckey: If you expect the best of kids inworld – they really DO measure up. Infractions in 40,000 kids in QA are so low and so benign – sometimes funny
  • Rita Ellul: Bron, that’s a tremendous credit to the quality of QA – kids are so engaged, they are focused and on task.
  • BronStuckey: Peter Whitehouse (Wonko) is a sec teacher in independent school in Q – has been commissioned to owrk on a  virt world in Active AWorlds for EQ – very interesting design
  • BronStuckey: Qa is a community – and kids donlt want to offend their community. After a while it is very self-moderating
  • BronStuckey: buidling community inworld is important – kids are really learning citizenry
  • http://opensimulator.org/
  • http://reactiongrid.com/
  • http://begoniaisland.edublogs.org/
  • http://jokaydia.com/

Tech Talk Tuesdays and eT@lking – this week’s sessions

Another two exciting sessions are being brought to you this week.

Tech Talk Tuesdays – Aug 17th 8-9pm

Topic: Making the Impossible, Possible – Implementing a Virtual Worlds’ Program in a Traditional School Environment

Presenter: Lucy Barrow

Synopsis:- In this session we will explore one school’s journey to implement their Virtual Worlds Program. Even in a traditional school environment it is possible to bring about change to engage and motivate students in their learning. By using Quest Atlantis and OpenSim, teachers have discovered that enthusiasm and persistence are two of the key ingredients for educators looking to use virtual worlds with their students. Even those with little experience in this field can make it happen with the right support Join us as we explore the differences between virtual worlds such as Quest Atlantis and OpenSim and look at examples of student work across a number of curriculum areas.
Lucy Barrow is the innovative Staff ICT Trainer at Ballarat Grammar and responsible for the ICT Training of staff across a K-12 campus with approximately 1,300 students and 120 teachers. Prior to her current role, Lucy was the ICT Coordinator and ICT Specialist at three Catholic Primary Schools in Melbourne. She has a keen interest in web 2.0 tools and virtual worlds in education.
Link to the session

eT@lking: Wednesday 8-9pm Melbourne, Australia (gmt+10)

Topic:- Math 2.0 interest group: A year in review and brave new plans

Maria Droujkova, USA, the founder of Math 2.0 interest group, invites you to participate in the discussion of mathematical communities. During the event, we will look at different community types and discuss their accomplishments and needs. You will hear what founders of Scratch, GeoGebra, Calculation Nation, Cut the Knot, MathPlayground, ViewPoints Research, The Art of Problem Solving and many more math communities consider important tasks in mathematics education, and how they go about accomplishing the tasks. You can use the event to find math communities that will welcome your participation and add to your personal learning network. Maria will also talk about plans and dreams of the Math 2.0 group for the next year, including virtual and face-to-face conferences, the math game development forum, publishing efforts, and spin-off event series.
Link to the session:
About Maria: Maria Droujkova is the founder of Math 2.0 interest group She is the founder of natural math and mathfuture

Immersive Environments

What a great session this was! There was only a small group of participants but the chat and discussion was so dynamic and interactive. Colin Wood was the guest presenter and is currently the Manager of Partnerships for Learning at the NSW Centre for Learning Innovation. He is well versed in the various aspects of ICT integration in teaching and learning and education transformation. He discussed the latest in global educational use of immersive environments and provided us with many valuable links. One of the participants was extremely active in the chat and provided thought provoking comments, adding all the time to the conversations. It was only towards the end that the true identity was revealed – Jokay. How fortunate we were to have two experts in the same room sharing their knowledge and experience.

From the fast and furious chat came the following links to view or try:-

Tech Talk Tuesdays and eT@lking

Tech Talk Tuesdays – May 4th

Topic: 3D Virtual Worlds – One school’s journey

Guest Presenter: Steve Collis

Time: 3:45-4:45pm (Melbourne, Australia time gmt+10)

Online in elluminate: Link to join the session

Steve Collis is our guest presenter for this session. Steve is a multi award winning innovative teacher at Northern Beaches Christian School in NSW. This school established a locked 3D virtual world at the start of 2009 using the Second Life software. Students were recruited and keen to lead the virtual space. These students then submitted building projects for approval, implemented them, equipping the island with educational facilities such as a virtual art gallery, radio station, book shop (selling student compositions), tutorial centre and customisable Maths maze.
A great deal was learnt in 2009 about practical applications for using the virtual space in the classroom to target specific learning skills. There are learning activities that are adaptable, repeatable, require very little preparation time, and are pedagogically effective.
This session will include a tour of the virtual island and facilities, a review of the learning activities developed and run with students, and comments about the psychological nature of virtual space. A preview of this session can be seen at www.youtube.com/lestep. Practical considerations such as a safety, parental permission, and cost will also be addressed.

eT@lking:– Wed May 5th

Topic: Twitter

Guest Presenter: Jess McCulloch

Time: 8-9pm, Melbourne Australia time (gmt+10)

Online in elluminate: Link to join the session

Jess McCulloch will be the guest presenter. Some of the following topics will be discussed in this session:- why twitter, how to join twitter, choosing a twitter handle, the all important personal profile, how to find people, who should we follow, how many to follow, how to make lists, how to get the most out of twitter, using twitter in education and the classroom, tips for experienced tweeters and your questions!!!
Jess is an inspirational and versatile languages teacher who has used web2.0 for great effect in teaching languages, especially mandarin Chinese. In Jess’ own words she- “Plays: with technology and Chinese language education.” Please note there is something for everyone- new and old to twitter!

Virtual worlds for the young

In 2007, each IT class was given a different project for using web 2.0 The grade 3/4 class was one of our school’s larger ones with 30 students initially. techno patchThis meant the computer lab overflowed and sharing had to occur. Anyway, after searching for a suitable global project, I applied to join the kinzexchange project which a teacher in Canada had established. This involved buying a webkinz pet and maintaining a shared blog. Assuming it was like the teddy bear project where a classroom has a teddy bear who goes home with students at night and returns to school in the daytime. We enrolled for the project, only to find out that we had to buy a webkinz.  Despite their huge popularity in USA and Canada, no shop in Australia sold them yet. Searching ebay produced some private sellers in Australia so we duly bid for and were successful in buying Patch – a dear little dalmation puppy. Patch came with a code that allowed entry into the webkinz site, gave him a birth certificate, personal likes and dislikes etc and allowed us to be part of his virtual world. Students were then reponsible for his health and wellbeing and needed to provide him with necessities, including food, exercise, shelter etc. Patch starts with a certain amount of money, but as money is spent, students can gain more money through games like activities. That world can also include other webkinz pets. The arrival and stay of Patch has caused much excitement amongst both students and staff. It has provided talking points for students, given them motivation to maintain written journals and a focus of care and responsibility.

Students have taken him home on weeknights and weekends. Students who normally would not join in classroom discussion or talk to many others become quite animated and willing to say what Patch has been up to. The classroom teacher of grade 3/4 has now taken on the project and that has provided her with new technological skills.It has allowed our students to learn more about Canada. Terms like “fall”, “thanksgiving” and monarch have appeared on the blogs. The project is actually run by a teacher who has a younger grade but the grade 4 teacher at that school emailed us asking whether we would like to become pen pals (via snail mail). So the students have now exchanged letters and Christmas cards. They do not have ready access to computers but a computer technician has now been employed and it is hoped that we can videoconference with them and try other web 2.0 activities.

patchs-friends.jpgpatch-and-blue-tongue-lizard.jpgtechno patch

A sample journal entry:-

When I got to Nat’s house, he showed me around. I got to drive the car around the house. I met his family and then it was time to do the lambs. I fed Prince Charming. I rode Fiona and scratched the cat’s tummy. I had a great time outside but it was time to go inside.I got chased by Dino Raptor the robot and it bit my tail. I went on the motor bike and I went fast, so fast I went overboard. Fetch was played with Scruffy and the I went sailing into the bath tub to get clean. After that we wenton the play station 2 and I won. It was then time to go to bed. I wish I could go to Nat’s place again. feed-lambs.jpgscruffycar Some security tips:- only the IT and classroom teacher know the password for the website address. Students have limited time each day to care for Patch online and enter his virtual world.This has been an exciting project to be involved in.