Last week I attended a national conference and learned from keynote speakers, educator presentations, and conversations with newly met colleagues. I also learned from an eight year old at the airport and from his mother on the plane. My week … Continue reading →
Teaching in virtual spaces has become more than publishing information for learners to read and respond to. Thankfully, technology advances have made virtual spaces more creative, engaging, and interactive for teachers and learners. Today, there are no tested standards for … Continue reading →
Badges are a hot topic in education these days. Edutopia has a list of badges you can self-select or apply for, Mozilla’s Open Badge Project provides an infrastructure (still in Beta), including code, for the designing, earning and issuing of … Continue reading →
Ironically, while Common Core is causing a shift in pedagogy in traditional face-to-face classrooms, online classrooms are proliferating with the previously used pedagogy. The Common Core movement has veteran teachers rethinking and changing the way they teach. It is not … Continue reading →
The VWBPE MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) has spawned some OOCs. The first one is an Open Online Course on developing Alternative Reality Games (ARGs) and the second is on creating Machinima. Again, you may choose to participate actively or perhaps … Continue reading →
The Google Hangout screen on the right includes the screens of 9 colleagues, each of which can be viewed with a click. The screen on the left shows me in a game moving about and getting instructions from more experienced participants. … Continue reading →
I come across an article several times a week that describes a K-12 district or a state’s efforts for offering the opportunity for students to “learn online”. Higher education has been involved with online/distance learning for a longer period of … Continue reading →
The VWBPE MOOC took me into WoW last week. It was a bit of a learning curve, but my Virtual World (SL, RG, Opensim) experience did give me some frame of reference, particularly with basic movement and communication skills. … Continue reading →
Techplex Engineer describes the work of one of the teachers in a Summer Institute Course
I was building on Reaction Grid and in need of a script so I looked at the map, located a couple of green dots and teleported over to request help. Techplex Engineer, an Anime-haired avatar greeted me cordially and immediately guided me to exactly what I was seeking. Curious about the surroundings of the sim I had never seen, I inquired about the project and the blue haired Avi told me he was teaching teachers as part of a Summer Institute Outreach Program at the University of Maine’s School of Education. The name of the Course was “Creating An Immersive Virtual Learning Environment“.
Part of the project from the Summer Academy was a World Religions Plaza for use with high school students.
My interest piqued, I continued to ask questions, finding my new virtual friend to be knowledgable and adept at explaining. He provided pertinent web-sites, information about getting my mossy path to look seamless, and demonstrated layering of prims for particular effects. Techplex explained that the teachers in the course were learning to build and use this environment to become “a new breed and begin to integrate this type of learning into their classrooms and to transform the classroom into a more stimulating and exciting way to learn”. He was the co-instructor and “thankfully” not responsible for grading.
As is common in virtual environments, we exchanged ideas, discussed strategies and shared resources. The chance encounter was worthwhile, helpful, and meaningful to me as a veteran teacher. My new virtual colleague is a recent High School graduate on his way to the University this fall to major in electrical engineering.
Differentiating instruction includes supporting various student learning styles and is a challenge as teachers tend to teach in their own preferred style. For the skilled instructor, using learning style models, personality indicators and/or intelligence inventories, Virtual Worlds can remove some limitations … Continue reading →