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Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Learning in 3D: Class Five

Here we are listening to a student explain how she worked with her Freshmen to create a house.

The fifth class of Learning in 3D covered corporate uses of 3D worlds. Specifically we discussed ProtoSphere. We also went over setting up a group. But the highlight of the class was viewing the shelters created by the Graduate Students and summer Freshman. There was some really exciting success stories about the cooperation of the two groups and the interaction and building was amazing. Other groups...not so much. But I think it was an interesting "cross" classes interaction.

The lesson plans and machinimia will be posted next week and I will point to the location so everyone can take a look. In the meantime, I had a great group of students and really enjoyed the class. We also had a visitor Light Sequent from the UK. It is a great medium in which a visitor from another country can just "drop in" on a class. The power of 3D virtual worlds.


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Dixie said...

Agreed - pretty cool for Light to pop into class from the UK. I also enjoyed looking at the structures made my various members of the class and the summer freshmen. They went above and beyond the picture I had in my mind at the beginning of this course. I may not have had the best experience with my summer freshmen, but was encouraged to see the work that was completed by others. I specially loved the super mario brothers pipe. :)

Reflecting on my students, I noted early on that there was no motivation for them to complete this project. They weren't necessarily graded. And it really didn't relate to their fashion composition, which created much confusion. Rather, it may have been beneficial to explore fashion in other SL worlds. They could have reflected on this exploring within their writing, which would tie in all aspects.

This has been a unique class in the midst of this MSIT program. Prior to this experience, I sorta thought of SL as a social type world. So much learning can go on in a variety of different ways. Additionally, I have a new, huge appreciation for those who design and script these worlds. And, although I'm not positive I can use this with my high school students (not sure of their maturity level); I do believe that there are some things I can project and guide them through on a screen in the front of my class. For example, I'm interested in taking a tour through the Dell computer with my class - projected on the screen.

Thanks, Dr. Kapp!

Joanna Kreisher said...

I am always astonished at how technology changes- I just feel fortunate to be riding the wave of new technology and not struggling through the wake.

I had a great time learning about the 3D experience and the opportunities that are in 2nd life. Coming from a very limited gaming background of only Atari, I was not sure what to expect. Now that I have used such a technology to teach students how to work together to build a common structure and to explore environments that they would not normally be able to explore, like flying through a hurricane, I see much potential for such a program. Not only would classrooms be able to connect from anywhere in the world, but also experience things first hand (or should I say 2nd!!!). Although I see some obvious difficulties in using 2nd life in my high school classroom, I will be on the lookout for more 3D avenues to use.

John Kolessar said...

It was interesting how two applications, Second Life and ProtoSphere look similar on the outside but are actually very different. I can see where both have a place. ProtoSphere looks to be more focused on the actual interaction while Second Life has many world variables that effect the interaction between avatars.
This had to be one the best experiences of my graduate career. I never thought Second Life could be such a beneficial teaching tool. It really opens your imagination.

Mamma Dukes said...

This class was one of the best learning experiences for me in quite a while. The things that were really helpful were; seeing how freshman interact with the technology, how you can teach an old dog new tricks in pedegogy and how the technology can be adapted for educational use.

King's has purchased some land through CAPE and I was lucky enough to be the first to build on it. I will be using SL in my intro to mass comm classes and hope to learn more about how this new generation of gamers learns.

Thanks to Dr. Kapp and the entire class for sharing their experience with me.

I would just caution everyone to remember the words of Walter Dick, "if it doesn't work with paper and pencil it won't work with the technology either."

No matter what the technology you are using can do, you need to always remember that the learner is the most important part of the experience and that good instructional design makes for good learning.

Thanks again to you all.

Lynn Tarnowski said...

This was one of the coolest classes I had so far. I am not much of a gamer, so it was kinda new to me. It was so fun to go into Second Life and interact with everyone’s avatars.

I also got experience teaching the freshmen and learned a few lessons from them. It’s amazing how fast they catch on and how interested they are in this type of learning.

I think this is going to be a great teaching/learning tool for everyone. I think children will love to learn in this environment; this makes it fun to learn. I hope this catches on with younger children.

Thanks Dr Kapp for this great experience! I will be using this for future projects at work and for my own personal learning!!

--Lynn Tarnowski aka Lynn2 Szczepanski

Brett Simpson said...

This whole Second Life class was interesting and I can see so much potential for the use of these virtual worlds. Much of my experience on the major project with the Freshman was frustrating at best.

After a long period (two weeks late) of not being contacted by my freshman, I decided to join another group. Just as this was going I finally heard from my Freshman. I decided to work with both groups in the hope of having one group complete something.

After trying several times to meet with my group virtually I met with one of them in real life (but not the one who ever sent me e-mails or knew what exactly was happening). Luckily he was pretty tech savvy but this was the last time I ever heard from him. He was more confused on his project and requirements then I was. I'm not sure if they ever completed a building as I didn't hear back from them after trying. I searched buildings on MSIT island but just became frustrated with that seemingly hopeless search.

The other group I worked with never seemed to show up to meetings on time (more like 45 minutes late consistently). Ultimately they did build something which was exciting to see. It was nothing elaborate but hopefully it met their goals.

The idea of coordinating with the freshman was an interesting concept but has many bugs to work out for sure.

Overall I was very happy with the class to get me thinking differently. I'm excited to continue to pursue some ideas I have within Second Life and learn more about the scripting.

Ramona Broomer said...

Second Life is an amazing tool this learning experience exceeded my expectations. There are so many great ways for learners to observe, and critically think about design using Second Life.

There are so many possibilities for instruction using Second Life in the areas of set, light, sound and costume design which is my area of specialization. Second Life is a gold mine for teaching and learning especially for the visual and performing arts.

I'm a gamer so the interface looks very familiar to me. However, the interface may be off putting to some educators. Let me tell you there's more than meets the eye. The more tutorials and lesson plans that are developed may help spread awareness. The possibilities for using Second Life in education are limitless.

I created a Machinima for the first time using Movie Maker(which is fab-bu-lous). The step by step instructions in the syllabus were extremely helpful. I converted my file to a .wmv using which is free and fun to use. My video uploaded very quickly to these sites:
You Tube
Teacher Tube
I want to use Second Life with my theater students.

I found a great educational video game called "Stop Disasters!" created by the London based company "player three"
The purpose is to save lives by installing safe guards in defense and housing against several disasters that occur in different parts of the world a tsunami, earthquake, wild fire, flood and hurricane.

The graphics and sounds are great. It is a very informative game that can be played on different levels.

These educational video games address a variety of learning styles. The demo versions online are nice because educators can see if they are a good fit for their students and/or the curriculum.

Second Life and educational video games are two outstanding ways to integrate technology in the curriculum worth exploring.

tony said...

This class was the most interesting experience I have ever had in both Undergraduate and Graduate courses. I had no experience with SL before beginning this course. It allowed me to see the uses and possibilities that a 3-D world can offer. The exercise with the summer Freshman worked out well for my group. They cooperated and were very involved, making it a great learning experience for all of us.

Agreeing with what Dixie said, I believed that SL was more for social networking. I came to understand that it offered loads of tools for instructional uses. I am curious to see which businesses I encounter along my career path that began using SL (or other virtual environments) as a corporate tool.

Overall, I would love to see this class being offered year-to-year. It allowed us to explore a new learning environment while allowing for FUN learning. Great class!

Thanks Dr. Kapp,

Jennifer A. said...

The Second Life class was a lot different than I expected. I didn't any previous SL experience, but I really enjoyed what I learned. My favorite aspect of the class was being able to visit so many different places. It amazes me what people have built in Second Life (not excluding my awesome mansion =)).

The project with the freshman was interesting. I think given the right circumstances and proper instruction it would have worked a lot better. If the project is to be carried out again next summer, I would recommend lining up the projects to match the same topic. I was glad to see that some students worked well with their grads and created some neat structures.

I have a great time, Dr. Kapp, thanks a lot!

-Jen A.

Ramos Magic said...

My group and I were lucky to have such a cooperative group. There was a lot to learn from dealing with students not only new to technology and the idea of online virtual worlds, but college as well.

It teaches a lesson in real life that in virutal worlds such as second life it is important to connect with your learner. That can be said for any distance or e learning. To have the ability to make the learning fun and for each learner develop for themselves intrinsic value to continue learning.

One group mentioned their learners were into fashion design, so a lesson plan around creating an avatar clothing line perhaps or a runway show perhaps.

The possibilities are endless!

I will continue to drop into SL to enjoy it's vast greatness.

jennifer said...

I am so happy to have ended my graduate career with this class. I never could have imagined the possibilities of Second Life until now. In just one day I traveled to Egypt to visit the pyramids, played guitar on the main stage at Woodstock 1969, sipped a cappuccino in Venice and saw Easter Island. What a great classroom tool SL would make!
Working with the freshman was a great learning experience for both the students and myself. I had a great group who showed a lot of interest in the lesson plan. The results were some really well-crafted shelters. The toughest part of the lesson plan was coming up with a good time to meet because most of the students commuted and did not have internet access at home.
I really enjoyed creating an avatar and attending class in a virtual environment. It was so interesting and creative that I think I could learn algebra in SL and not lose interest.
Thank you, Dr. Kapp, for a great introduction to an application I'm sure we'll all be seeing more of in the future.

MissJennie Weezles

Mike DePalma said...

I had a wonderful experience in this course. Before this summer, I had a very minimal experience with Second Life. When I first tried it, I was confused and I felt that I did not know what to do. Now that I have had a thorough introduction to Second Life, I have a much more enjoyable experience!

I now see the possibilities for virtual worlds and how they can be used for many different purposes such as training, meetings, instruction, collaborative efforts, team building, and group interaction.

My experience with the summer freshman was interesting, to say the least. We had a lot of difficulty scheduling meeting times in the beginning, and on several occasions my students would either show up late or not show up at all. Once we did meet, however, we had a wonderful experience learning and building objects together in Second Life.

I am interested to see the progression that virtual worlds will make in the coming years. Will we begin to see more completely open experiences such as Second Life, or will the virtual worlds become more specialized into an environment that contains special features unique to the target audience (such as grading and assignment tracking for learners)? I think that this is the beginning of a huge change in training and education.

I had a wonderful time in this class. It was fun, engaging, and I learned a lot throughout the course. Thanks!

Mike DePalma

Ryan L. Sittler said...

I definitely came away from this class with some ideas about how to utilize Second Life in my own teaching... so I'd consider that a success.

However, I think I came into the class with a little bit too much prior knowledge... I was definitely not "blown away" as many of my classmates appear to be. The downside of being a "native" I suppose.

Additionally, I found the experience to be largely frustrating... because the freshman component of the couse was (for me) very negative.

Second Life is easy... you can generally depend on machines/software to act as expected (once the bugs are worked out.) People, on the other hand, can be unpredictable and difficult... ;)

Alexis said...

There are so many things that could be said about this class it is hard to decide where to start. Coming into this class I was very nervous because I had no experiance with virtual worlds at all. As class progressed I really began to enjoy Second Life and learned a lot of new skills to apply in the virtual world.

The lesson plan assignment really made me begin to think outside of the box on how I could use Second life for different educational purposes. As I worked on this I came up with multiple lessons that I now cannot wait to apply to my classroom.

This was a great class and really enjoyed all the componants of it. Thanks for a great semester :o)

Mark Kreisher said...

This class was extremely interesting and I can see multiple connections to learning in my Technology Education Classroom. I hope to apply many of the concepts that I learned about 3D learning into my Technology Classes this year. Overall, the experience was excellent, however, I found the building component to have a learning curve. I wish that the software engineers would have paralleled the building component to existing software applications such as CAD software and 3D Solids Modeling programs. These programs allow for simplified building and extrusions, cutting, drilling and animations as well as graphic interface with vector and raster editing software. I do look forward to the next evolutionary step in 3D learning in the future.

edayis said...

I learned a great deal about the possibilities of instruction within Second Life. I have to admit, that before the class started, I was a bit wary about the existence of any practical application of Second Life for learning.
I had a wonderful experience coming to understand the ways that this program can be an invaluable asset for instructors of all varieties. What I took away the most from the course was that Second Life requires not only the student to think outside of the box, but the instructor as well.
It requires that the instructor be able to expand on traditional teaching methods, innovating both formal (objective based) and informal (collaborative/group)learning approaches in the delivery of a course or lesson.

Thanks to Dr. Kapp, and all of my wonderful classmates!


Navalin Williamson said...

I was fascinated with second life before this class but was frustrated trying to learn on my own. Even then I did not truly grasp the educational value of learning in 3D. I mentioned this course to several of my coworkers and they all thought it was fun and games until I explained the educational uses to them and they all became fascinated like I am. This was not only an educational experience but an entertaining one. I had fun learning.

Learning about the archetypes that can be applied to 3D learning was very important. Often times we are taught about technology and told to implement this technology but are not given the tools/procedures/know how on how this should be done. The machinima project took this a step further; creating a video that will assist other educators in using second life as part of the instructional tools.

I think as an instructional designer it is important to try and find new and interesting ways to instruct, second life and 3D learning is an additional tool that we should take advantage of.