Virtual Reality in School

Hope Wimmer

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    Virtual Reality is becoming integrated into our school. Mrs. Painter, an eighth-grade world geography teacher, has started to incorporate this technology into her classroom. In her classroom, she uses the Smart Phone 3D Model. The viewers come in many brands, shapes, and sizes. Some are made out of cardboard, while others are more fancy with straps that wrap around your head, or have a cushion around them for comfort.

   She was asked why she chose to use this in her classroom, and she replied with this, “To give my students a feeling of ‘being there’. VR allows my students to get a 360-degree view of a place.” The place that is being visited is in 3D so you may feel like you are actually at the place that you are looking at.      

   Next, Mrs. Painter was asked why she decided to use this technology. She responded with, “When the topic fits into our curriculum. Such as, we used it to explore environments in the Man and the Environment unit. We will use it again for Global Cultures to explore famous buildings.” For the Man and the Environment unit, we explored anywhere from a reef to a valley, while the camera was on a drone!

   “I knew about the technology, but in November 2015 I attended a conference and was given two pairs of cardboard viewers by a vendor.” This is how Mrs. Painter responded when she was asked how she came across the virtual reality goggles and technology.

   What did the students think about it? This is how she responded, “I believe they enjoyed them. Some mentioned slight eye and headache concerns, and we will use them for shorter durations in the future.” What would you think if you were to wear these?

   When Mrs. Painter was asked to describe having the goggles on, she described it like this, “You are placed in that moment. Sometimes, you are high in the air but you should not move because it could be disoriented.”

   If you are wondering what devices that the goggles are compatible with, here is your answer given by Mrs. Painter. “This is a hard question. Each viewer [goggle] has compatibilities that differ. Some viewers have remotes, but those only work with Android devices right now. If you are planning to purchase, please do research or come speak with me.”

   Virtual Reality is becoming a big thing not only in the world but in schools, too. They are used to give people a sense of being wherever they desire. They are a really cool piece of technology that is also used for learning.

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Virtual Reality in School