A new look for the Hydrologist

•July 6, 2009 • Comments Off on A new look for the Hydrologist

All but one of the virtual characters for the marsh is completed.  A picture of the hydrologist is below.  It is funny how we see ourselves in a character, even if that character isn’t ourselves.  If someone should ask me how this character came to look like she does, I will claim the 5th.  The character was initially supposed to have a more scientific, natural look … glasses, sunhat, petite.  However, she needed to be changed  :-(.  Oh well … its funny how we see ourselves.

An Makeover - The Hydrologist

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More Ideas – Visit to Pulp and Papermill Plant

•July 1, 2009 • Comments Off on More Ideas – Visit to Pulp and Papermill Plant

Today I went on a tour of a build that NMC Virtual Worlds did for Yale University of a Paper Mill Plant on Elihu Island in Second Life.  This build was done for a graduate Industrial Ecology class.  Various field trips are a big part of the course however scheduling of such for graduate students is difficult and Pulp and Paper Mills are not often excited in having students visit for obvious safety reasons.  

What I really liked on this build was the use of ambient sound and movement to create immersion.  Yale also used a blog to provide additional background information. 

http://wordpress.commons.yale.edu/pulpandpaper/

During the tour, CJ Carnot of NMC Virtual Worlds talked about what he felt SecondLife as a medium does well from an educational perpective and I was glad to see that he supported my own humble thoughts and opinions.  Virtual worlds are great at role-playing and simulations however, they are not the best at actually teaching a skill.  For example, in health-education they are great at presenting a case study and having students interact with content and virtual “patients” however they are not great at teaching a physical skill such as inserting an IV.  SecondLife is also good at teaching math skills.

What I also found interesting is that CJ talked about the challenges in creating specialized builds on different topics where the builder is lacking in background content knowledge .  Working with content experts requires good communication skills and patience to determine what is really important for  the build.  I found this also to be the case on the virtual marsh.  His comments definitely made me feel better!!!

Great Quote for the Marsh

•June 15, 2009 • Leave a Comment

Martha Schoene, one of the faculty members on this project, found a terrific quote while doing her son’s 4th grade project … I just have to find someplace to use it on the marsh or in the project.  I’m thinking it would be perfect as a footer in the documention  …  I love the quote.

“In every outthrust headland, in every curving beach, in every grain of sand there is the story of the earth. “

Rachel Carson

The Reporter

•May 16, 2009 • Comments Off on The Reporter

The reporter in our scenario directs students to The Sandy Times newspaper articles in the Visitor Center.  I embedded the assessment in the reporter’s backback.  The newspaper articles  have been completed and grouped together using the Acrobat 9 portolio tool.

The Reporter

 

Ahhhhh Finally

•April 11, 2009 • Leave a Comment

I have been searching all over for the ideal picture for Salt Marsh Dynamics and here it is!  I found this heron in Spellbound Woods, Creative Fantasi in Second Life.  The animation is so incredible as the bird fishes for his next meal. 

Heron at Spellbound Woods

Heron at Spellbound Woods

The International Journal of Learning and Media

•March 20, 2009 • Leave a Comment
I ran across this online journal by the MacArthur Foundation that would be a good fit for submission for my research paper on the virtual marsh. 
http://ijlm.net/

This online journal provides a forum for scholars, researchers, and practitioners to examine the changing relationships between learning and media across a wide range of forms and settings.  It looks like it would be a perfect fit!

It includes a piece on virtual worlds by Douglas Thomas and John Seely Brown, “Why Virtual Worlds Matter”  that I have seen, read and used before.

isuu

•March 20, 2009 • Comments Off on isuu

When I looked at the Rez Ed community portal today I was reminded of a cool online publishing tool called isuu that would be perfect for the printed materials for the virtual marsh.  I love the interface although I’m not crazy about the advertising on the side for a non-paid account.  Never the less, I want to make a record of it here for consideration.