Last week was a whirlwind of edtech fun as presenters from around the country shared tools to inspire technology use in the classroom. I had the privilege of sharing at 4 workshops, 3 sessions and 1 poster presentation on various technology resources. It goes without stating that my passion for Augmented and Virtual Reality were my highlights.
Use the resources I created below to modify for your lessons and/or professional development. My hope is that these resources bring creative ways to use technology in our classrooms.
Codewars with Sphero
Main presenter - Holly Curry
This session was an incredibly active time as we played, created, and played some more. I created this Google Slide presentation to build your own obstacle course...with a twist. Holly created more resources on this Spark page.
View these Periscopes from the workshop by selecting the images below. Continue to learn coding in this module here.
The Power of Virtual
In this session, we had time to explore and create virtual reality experiences. As you see in this image, it was a personalized learning experience and everyone walked away with a different way to implement these tools. Get the Google Slide presentation here. I've created a VR module to continue the learning here.
3D Printing & 3D Pens
In all honesty, this workshop was on a topic that I had the least experience. The initial session was submitted to share how a school district was able to implement 3D printing and 3D pens, however, when the principal from the campus was unable to attend, I created an alternative plan. Through the talented Matthew Lincheck and Joy Schwartz, the session turned out to be fantastic!
Get the presentation here and check out these pictures by attendees below. Special thanks to STEMfinity for the free 3D pens for the attendees to try out! Want more creation resources? Get access to this module I created for students as digital creators.
Learning Ambassador Dinner
To say that we had a good time at the Learning Ambassador dinner at Moonshine is an understatement. It was an honor to meet with these incredible folks and I can’t wait to connect with them again at ISTE. If you’d like to learn about joining the Learning Ambassador program with Atomic Learning, get more information here.
Google in 360
Sharing the tools the Google tools to view and create 360 experiences was a short but successful session. The resources were discussed and demonstrated while offering the opportunity to get additional resources on this flyer. Some of the tools shared were Google Spotlight Stories, Google Streetview, Google Cardboard Camera, YouTube 360 Playlist and the Google Camera Loan program. You can view the 360 from our session in RoundMe.
AR VR Playground
While sharing augmented and virtual reality in short sessions is a way to get some resources out quickly, the workshops allowed the experience to be experienced in a much deeper capacity. This workshop was co-presented with Matt Lincheck and we were able to experience ZapBox which was shared for the VERY FIRST TIME! If you’re wondering what the hype is all about, check out Zappar’s Kickstarter campaign and join the party. In addition to ZapBox, we were able to explore several AR & VR apps for the classroom in stations. The attendees worked together in groups to view these resources and discuss how these tools can be applied in the classroom. Check out the presentation here. On the left you'll see the new ZapBox app that isn’t available to the public quite yet, but you’ll want to get ready for the release by this summer.
Social Media & Live Video Chats Poster Session
I had the opportunity to share upcoming virtual, global events for our classrooms: #ECGC17 & #GlobalMakerDay. Both of these events allow global connections to build your PLN, collaborate with others classrooms around the world and provide authentic conversations. Get ready for #ECGC17 (EdChange Global Classrooms) coming up on February 28th! Want more learning opportunity? Get access to this module I created.
Special Gift for Mady
I had the honor of joining Joy Schwartz as she presented 2 items that were 3D printed by her students and given to an incredible young lady. Last November, I was overwhelmed by the talents and passion her students shared at #GlobalMakerDay and to see their talents used to help others showed the “give back” culture that every classroom should have. Joy's students not only design and 3D print prosthetic limbs for students around the world, but her class decided that a matching American Girl doll would be an appropriate gift for the occasion. Mady was full of life as she danced around, flipped around in cart wheels and held tight to her first American Girl doll that is JUST LIKE HER. There was no question that this evening was the highlight of my trip, and one experience that I will never forget. View the Periscope here and see the incredible images below from that night. In addition, KVUE was able to capture this special time and you can watch it here.
After an hour of amazing game creations, problem solving, and some wild 5 minute countdowns, the session was nearly ready to wrap up. I was amazed at the creativity each team displayed and how quickly they were able to adjust and modify their games as difficult challenges were presented. The finale of the session was the introduction of Bloxels! We worked on creating characters, building a quick video game and decorating the game to fit any curriculum. Check out the Game Maker presentation and the short Periscope of the session.
What's next? I'm excited to share more sessions at #ISTE17 this summer in San Antonio. JOIN ME!
Want to go to ISTE this summer? Check out this opportunity for a free registration and a travel stipend. If you win and tag a Learning Ambassador, they also get free registration! Get more info about the contest here.
VR IN THE CLASSROOM
When I first experienced virtual reality, I didn't make it's connection to education. The idea that we could "play games" in the classroom with virtual reality seemed to offer little to no educational value. After experiencing the VR apps available last year, I completely changed the way that this technology could and should be used in the classroom.
When putting on my Google Cardboard and looking around, I immediately began imagining how this experience could break our kids out of the classroom scenery, and dive into their lessons (literally).
Eventually, I was overwhelmed by the many 360 videos on YouTube as I immersed myself into the experience. Not only was I watching what I wanted to watch, I could watch the same video multiple times and have a completely different experience each time. Pausing the video only brought about more disbelief as the experience was frozen in time but I could still look around.
Understanding several cameras wrapped in a circle pointing outward and stitched together made sense, however, my lack of knowledge in app development is much more fuzzy. Regardless of the way this technology was designed, this resource is growing and should be seriously evaluated. FYI, this list could be updated daily as new VR apps for EDU keep coming. If you want to stay in the loop with current VR apps, join this Google+ Community - VR in Education.
MY TOP VR CLASSROOM APPS...FOR NOW
If you are looking for panoramic photos to come to life, this app allows users to view and create their own spheres from all over the world. The benefit of this app, is the opportunities to create VR experiences and share the content by link for others to view in the app or on the web. One of the best features in this app is the opportunity to add hotspots within the image. As you view, you can select the "i" to gain more insight into the 360 experience.
The negative with the RoundMe app is the unexpected content. This app was not designed for education, although unusual, it's possible to accidentally arrive up in the middle of an inappropriate panorama.
CLASSROOM IDEA: Take a panoramic image of your classroom to prepare students and parents for the first day of school and embed the scrolling image on your classroom website.
CLASSROOM IDEA: Have students create a panoramic image and add hotspots to North, East, South, West, identify the biome, or create a scene for a written story.
While Nearpod has been around for quite some time, they have recently added a new feature that is incredibly easy to add VR in your lessons. Adding the exploration of different scenes and locations can change the atmosphere in your classroom and bring students to places they would never see without this technology. The inclusion of VR can be assesses by questions, activities, YouTube videos, and more.
In order to use the VR feature in Nearpod, you must have a Gold, School or District subscription. Using the Gold subscription, I was able to get 50 participants to join in the lesson at TCEA 2016 without a single problem. The VR feature works best on mobile devices as 360 cities is unpredictable on computers.
CLASSROOM IDEA: Take your class on an adventure to an unknown location and ask the kids to make predictions of their location from what they observe in the VR field trip.
I was incredibly blown away the first time I experienced 360 videos in YouTube on my phone. How is it possible to watch the video all around me? I am absolutely hooked on 360 videos, and I hope that our schools will catch up with the technology requirements as quickly as it's available. When I ran across in360tube I didn't quite understand it's benefits. I found the need to use the app when I couldn't bring myself to add YouTube on student devices. It was then that I realized how valuable this app was because it eliminated the advertisements and recommended videos.
The benefits to using this apps certainly outweighs to cons. I have found that the app is down for maintenance at times and not all videos that are 360 in YouTube don't pull in in360Tube correctly. At this point, this is the best option I can find and hoping the app continues to improve.
CLASSROOM IDEA: Select a specific 360 video and ask the students to write a story that incorporates the elements of the video.
CLASSROOM IDEA: Have the students play "Where's Waldo" and look for specific items: rock erosion, writing verbs seen in the video, the season observed, landforms, etc. BTW, Where's Waldo does exist in 360!
While it's hard to pick just one, Google Spotlight Stories seems to be my favorite VR app to show classes, because being apart of a 360 style story is so much fun! The story will pause as you explore the scenery around and resume when your back to the main scene. Google Spotlight Stories gives me hope of a new way of storytelling. Imagine the future of 3 different stories happening all around you within the same video. Our view of the world is all we see, but WHAT IF we could see the story from multiple perspectives? The possibilities are endless and I hope this will be a reality in the future.
The dilemma I run into with this app is the requirement of the latest iOS and a fairly new device. With such an incredible app, it was ironic to see no updates since July 2015 and the app doesn't allow split screen for Google Cardboard...yet. I'm curious what Google has in store for the future of this app to transform stories forever.
CLASSROOM USE: The students can watch the stories and then write the words to the story that could be read during the experience.
I have recently started using the 360 experiences from AugThat and taken session attendees on mini-vacations. Exploring the world around us is important, and these 360 panorama images are breathtaking. If you haven't checked into the amazing AR lessons in AugThat, you'll definitely want to check out the VR activities.
CLASSROOM USE: Ask students to draw a picture that was not in the scene, but could have been.