MATHEMATICS VR CASE STUDY: Estimation & Prediction (Student Age 5-7)
“As part of our mission to embed Virtual Reality across the curriculum, we have begun to use the technology to create opportunities for independent exploration and creative mathematical thinking.”
“Geometry, estimation, prediction and logical reasoning are all key areas of mathematics and we wanted to stretch our pupils’ reasoning through contextualised, VR learning.”
Age 5 – 7 Primary School Teacher (UK)
Within a mathematics lesson, we used a photograph of a celebration of light from China and asked the children to begin by looking for different shapes within the lanterns. They were able to zoom in and deconstruct the shapes by moving around the 360 image and thoroughly examining each lantern from various angles. We then wanted to move the children’s learning on, and as such, we asked them to identify different composite shapes within the image and within larger objects. This involved the children applying their understanding of shape and geometry to a variety of objects and then explain how and why they have reached their decision. We encouraged the children to explain their strategies and thinking, so as to deepen their mathematical reasoning and also choose different objects within the image independent of our guidance. Afterwards, we asked the children to estimate the number of lights within the image and discussed how they could methodically and systematically have found an answer to this – again, scaffolding their deeper reasoning and higher order thinking skills.
IMPACT ON LEARNING
As an immersive mathematical experience, it is very powerful and also means that you are encouraging students to think about the world around them in different, creative and explorative ways. In doing so, we found that having these opportunities then fed into students applying their mathematical understanding within their social times and across a wide variety of subject areas. The impact of this meant that the children were constantly re-applying and re-visiting their mathematical skill base, because of having had the opportunity to apply their knowledge and understanding in such a fun and unique context.