Wednesday marked a banner day for the DEN in SL with the Wednesday Workshop topic: A Blended Virtual Ecosystem: North Carolina Virtual Public School’s Great Discovery in Second Life. The presentation was fantastic, with Dr. Brian Setser (Innovator Quan – SL), of the North Carolina Virtual Public School guiding the audience through the journey the school has made through Second Life, lessons learned, and best practices. Co-presenter, Jennifer Nobles (JIll Kips – SL) led a breakout session to illustrate the power of multiple experiences and discussion in Second Life.
Opening with the motto of “I eat barriers for breakfast”, Dr. Setser discussed the questions of innovation versus security and the importance of partnering in Second Life to enhance opportunities and experiences.
The NCVPS team, including Adam Renfro (iAdam Zapatero – SL), shared multiple websites that an educator may find useful. They are included at the bottom of this post. Some of the sites include other virtual worlds which may be more appropriate for younger students, such as Enterzon and ActiveWorlds.
By the end of the workshop, participants had a feel for some of the innovative and engaging ways that Second Life can be used in education. To paraphrase Dr. Setser, we shouldn’t bring people to a treehouse, we should bring them into the ecosystem by utilizing the power of the virtual world.
ActiveWorlds – 3D Chat/Virtual World
QWAQ – Virtual Spaces for Real Work
PowerU – 3D Immersive (3DI) Virtual Environments