[Conference][Main]

 Virtual Reality VR in K-12 Education



NICE: Combining Constructionism and Collaboration in a Virtual Learning
	Environment 
The NICE project is an immersive participatory learning environment for young users. Its underlying theoretical framework combines constructionist educational theory with ideas that emphasize the importance of collaborative learning and narrative development. The main activity in NICE is to construct, cultivate, and preserve a healthy virtual garden. Using a lightweight hand-held device for interaction, children plant vegetables, exchange plants with other virtual participants, climb over objects, and change their size. An important goal of NICE is to study the effectiveness of a virtual environment as a conceptual learning and evaluation medium.

Maria Roussos
Andrew E. Johnson
Jason Leigh
Christina A. Vasilakis
Craig R. Barnes
Thomas G. Moher
University of Illinois at Chicago
mroussos@eecs.uic.edu

Historical Role Playing in Virtual Worlds: VRML in the History Curriculum and Beyond

The Isidore Newman School uses virtual reality in the history curriculum to role-play important figures and events. In preparation, students pick an avatar to visually represent the historic figure and create a "public card" containing the information about the figure. During a role-playing project, students provide on-line historical interpreters on the Internet, and students from around the world can interact with the historical figure being role-played. Transcripts from these dialogs are used to evaluate students' learning and fine-tune the history curriculum. SIGGRAPH 97 attendees interacted in real time with students at the school, who role-played prominent characters from the U.S. history curriculum.

Jonah Peretti
Mark Cowett
Vince Ricci
Casey Chavet
The Isidore Newman School
jperetti@newman.lk2.la.us

Virtual Reality the Modular Way

The virtual reality module offers an affordable means for schools to introduce virtual reality to the classroom without buying additional computer equipment. The VR module is flexible in that it can be modified to focus on many curricula. The module encourages active learning on the part of students and emphasizes communication and collaboration skills.

Bill Menousek
Terry Wolfe
Educational Service Unit #3, Omaha
menousek@esu3.k12.ne.us