I just took a short class on Second Life and learned some of the basics about getting around, building things and communicating. It was fun, but I'm still thinking about ways to apply it to the classroom.

Is anyone out there using Second Life for their own learning or for teaching?

Please share your suggestions and ideas for ways to explore, places to go and how to use this tool in the classroom.
Thanks
-Elizabeth

Tags: virtualworlds

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Hi Elizabeth, I am an active member of a learning community on campus (BGSU) that is focusing on second life so thanks for starting this post. The post by Alij seems to have some interesting links so, I hope this stays active, I will add stuff as the come to me.

Cheers Gerry Davis
I'm heavily invested in learning in SL. At the moment, I have more questions than answers.

Some of the questions I'm considering:

- Why is it the same educators who get frustrated by students who say "Just tell me what I need to know!" are the first to say "Just tell me what I need to know"?

- What would constitute a valid educational research question in the environment?

- How does Embodiment in SL change how we think about online communication in general and how does it effect how we feel about ourselves in RL?

- How can I convince educators that if they want to understand SL, they have to be IN SL and not merely tourists? (Everybody hates a tourist.) If you don't participate in the community, you can't understand it.
Hey Elizabeth. -- this is obviously a very old question, but to offer a very new answer, I'd suggest you attend virtually (the realworld session is sold out :) SLedupotential: Educational Potential of Second Life and Virtual Worlds, a session at ISTE's NECC, come June 30, 2008, in San Antonio, Texas and in Second Life at ISTE Island.

Just google any of the terms in the message above to get more info! And/or, check the SLedupotential wiki...

Cheers! And I'm wondering what answers you may have gotten to this query, beyond what we see here? Have you continued to 'splore?

Scott
Hi Liz, I have just completed a 4 week pd on Quest Atlantis which is a virtual world for middle school students. Students don an avatar and move around the safe educational world completing pre-determined quests or eventually quests that are set up by their classroom teacher. They are able to meet other quest atlantis students from around the globe and teachers can collaborate and set up co-quests.These quests cover science, humanities, life skills etc. We are about to start with our grade 6 students next term.
I'm new to Second Life. I've found Sloodle, and I think that may be something I'd like to learn more about. I've been cruising around Second Life and I visit all these cool looking buildings with cool furniture and cool kiosks that link to cool blogs/websites/wikis.

But how do you create this stuff? My idea as a teacher is to have my own little piece of SL where my students wander through the same cool stuff to find their assignments and the resources necessary to complete their assignments.

When I go to tutorials about building stuff, all I learn about is how to get and modify a box. People don't actually build all of these structures, furniture and gadgets from scratch do they? If I wanted to experiment with putting together a SL classroom, what would I do?

I found some free buildings in a store in SL. I added them to my inventory. But I don't know how to get them out of my inventory.

And one more question, after I know how to experiment with creating things, is there a place I can try it out without buying land or materials? I just want to see if I can do it and how time consuming it is.
We use Secondlife for our teachers (mainly for our virtual career fairs).
We are using Opensim (http://Grid.greenbush.us) & our Edusim app (http://edusim3d.com) with students however mainly due to security & age restrictions SL was not a god option for us and our students (though we do have a teen grid Island) ..... and Edusim being peer to peer it gave teachers/classes complete control of their environment.

We do virtual mars explorations - alternate energy lessons (building windmills etc.) ... and deep sea explorations.

Here is a quick video of the kids colonizing Mars - http://youtube.com/watch?v=vjVG6uh8P80

We also have them build worlds to demonstrate different concepts we may be covering (kind of like 3D powerpoint or a 3D blog/wiki).

We have been involved in virtual worlds now for 3 years so have a decent understanding of the tech if you have any further questions I would be glad to help.
i joined SL after the Atlanta NECC....and i've gotten fairly involved with it (ISTE, DEN, etc.)...professionally i do some library work with the Caledon Oxbridge University as a newbie mentor....socially, i live in a Victorian Steampunk city where i own a steampunk factory, metal treehouse, a welsh chapel & graveyard, and a memorial park & tourelle dedicated to The meteorite that fell in 1795 in England. i see it as the future of distance learning but i have to admit, it's for people who have the luxury of time to practice with it... it as the learning curve is very sharp.

on ISTE Island

My Factory...another view of it whilst taking a Stained glass Air baloon ride with my factory in the background - Full Size Pic

Edward Topham Memorial Park

Dewi Sant Memorial Welsh Chapel, Graveyard & Parsonage Tower with Wee Telescope
Here is our latest Opensim world for our 4th -6th graders .... CSI
on our local grid here - http://grid.greenbush.us

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