Exploring the Possibilities

During the discussions about Teen Second Life it was noted that earlier Regina Public Schools groups have been restricted to the RPS island.  I fully understand the risks of exposing students to the outside world of TSL but I am  interested in exploring the use of TSL as a venue for  global interaction with other teens around the world.  I was very intrigued by the possibilities in Adult SL of visiting art galleries and ancient civilizations and I am disappointed that those types of activities are restricted in TSL. I think that it is important for teachers to introduce students to the possibilities of using social media for global interaction in a constructive and educational way.  They know how to use it to socialize but by the time they begin to enter post secondary education and the work force, social media will be used routinely for so much more than social interaction.  We began this course with discussions about teachers being responsible to use media and technology in the classroom because it is the reality of our students world but  maybe we should also try to keep ahead of the trends when we can.  I know that that sounds daunting given some previous discussions about teacher fear, resistance and lack of ability but perhaps for some of us that are comfortably working with technology this should be a priority.

I was exploring YouTube and came upon this video that made me think of the global possibilities of TSL. I think that participation in a project like this should be explored with students that are comfortable using Second Life so activities that I have seen like RPS Culture Project and Social Issues Project would be a great introduction to using SL.  After this, I think it would be interesting to explore the options for global collaboration.

Or how about this project.  Talk about immersion!

What I began to notice was that all the projects and interactions that I was drawn to seemed to be organized by Global Kids.

Hmmmm. Interesting.  This is something that I would like to explore.  I am thinking not so much to be involved in the organization directly but perhaps to take some of their  mission and adapt it.  Using technology opens up so many possibilities and it is very frustrating to me to see how often and easily the access can be restricted.  Just the fact that RPS employees in this class were unable to access SL from school shows a lack of understanding of the possibilities.    There are so many things that are possible!

And then I found this:

That was just entertaining!

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2 Comments »

  1. Shawna Stangel Said:

    The possibilities are truly endless. You have come across so many great examples of how SL and TSL can become embedded into classroom learning. Isn’t it just amazing how the ideas are out there and when we give our students the opportunity to give proof of their learning they can really shine brighter than we give them credit for.

    Love the Thriller video. 🙂

  2. kibrown Said:

    I agree the potential for a virtual learning environment is amazing. I also think that it might not necessarily be Second Life. I’ve been looking around at Whyville: http://whyville.net/smmk/nice and wondering how I could incorporate this in my classroom. I’ve also introduce Twiducate into my classroom and the students really enjoy it: http://www.twiducate.com/. Club Penguin is another site that is popular with students: http://www.clubpenguin.com/. I’ve also been exploring Panwapa which has been developed by the same people who’ve brought us Sesame Street: http://www.panwapa.org/.
    I think there are many sites we can use with students that stimulate then and introduce them to the virtual learning environments on the web.


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