EARLY YEARS VR CASE STUDY: Cave Exploration (Student Age 5 -6)
Kinnwood Central School, Ontario, Canada
“Our students first practiced using the VR headsets to explore hot air balloons. This was sparked after reading the story “Not a Box”. After heavily investigating what a hot air balloon looked like up close, and how it moves, our class ended up building a hot air balloon and encouraging school community members to come experience hot air balloon expeditions.”
“The students learned lots of scientific language and how to operate the VR headsets. Next, they expressed interest in caves and requested that we look up various cave expeditions.”
Age 5 -6 Primary School Teacher (CA)
We started by using 360 cave images, which provoked a wide variety of questioning, researching, discovering, creating, and writing. After exploring a cave with the headsets, our students had many questions: Why are there icicles hanging? How do caves form? How could animals live in the dark? When they went on the expedition a second time, they were excited to talk about stalactites, stalagmites and columns which they were seeing and eagerly searched for troglobites inside the cave. They recreated many of their own findings by building a large cave inside our classroom and creating paper and digital books. This extended to investigating water and ice caves, and researching animals that may live inside or on top of ice caves such as penguins. Students measured their height and compared it to these animals. Finally, they produced educational videos and provided QR codes to attach to the cave to add to this interactive experience when visitors arrived.
IMPACT ON LEARNING
We approach learning concepts by providing fun, interactive, authentic and rich experiences based on the interests and needs of our students. We are educators who listen, ask open-ended questions, wonder, problem-solve and discover WITH our students. We believe VR technology was the perfect learning tool to extend our students’ ideas and promote analytical thinking. ClassVR engaged and inspired every student in our learning community. It added a third dimension to their learning experience that they could connect with and become inspired by.
- To use language to communicate thinking, reflect and solve problems.
- To ask questions for a variety of purposes.