Encourage Collaborative Learning in the Classroom with a Multiplayer VR Experience
2020 saw one of the most dramatic changes to the way we teach in modern history. With countries all over the world following strict social isolation rules, students had to do much of their learning remotely. With no collaborative learning in the classroom and interactions with their fellow classmates, it is no surprise social isolation increased for many students.
Not only has isolation impacted student well-being; research also shows remote learning can often have a detrimental effect on student engagement. The National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER) showed that – on average – less than half of the pupils (42%) engaged in remote learning and 90% of teachers believed that students were doing ‘less or much less work’ than they would usually expect.
Deliver Collaborative Learning in the Classroom and Remotely with ClassVR
One of the main challenges faced by teachers is a lack of engagement from students and a general lack of motivation. We are excited to introduce a ‘guided group sessions’ update that is available from the ClassVR Portal to help boost student engagement and motivation.
Prior to COVID, ClassVR created a shared learning experience for students. Whether they were exploring 3D models in augmented reality, discussing 360-degree pictures and videos or even diving into 3D virtual reality worlds and explorable scenes in the classroom, this was all lost when schools closed their doors.
This new feature means both students and teachers can connect and use any of the explorable scenes on the ClassVR Portal (or any of the exciting new scenes that are part of Avanti’s World), as a group, irrespective of location. Using advanced browser-enabled technology, that we call VRroom, these scenes are accessible from ClassVR headsets or any device with a web browser, perfect for remote learning.
The ‘guided group sessions’ are the first-of-their kind to encourage students to explore a virtual reality scene together – the ideal solution encouraging collaborative learning in the classroom and in remote learning scenarios.
Launch a Guided Group Session in the ClassVR Portal
To launch a guided session within the ClassVR Portal, simply select any scene from the ‘Libraries’ tab, add it to your playlist and launch it to all connected devices using the ‘Play’ button.
To create a guided group session, click on the ‘Person’ icon at the bottom of the ‘Playlist’ tab and switch from solo mode to group exploring mode.
Once the guided group session mode is activated, you will see a hyperlink displaying the name of the scene you are exploring. By clicking on this link, you open the scene in a new browser tab (via VRroom) which brings you into the same space as your students using the ClassVR headsets. This provides an opportunity for you to guide the scene all from behind an exciting VRroomie (character-based avatar) of your choice.
More excitingly you can even bring students learning remotely into the same virtual space for a shared learning experience. Using the share button next to the scene display name you can generate a QR code and a URL link that can be copied and shared to your students, accessible from any device with a web browser.
Each shareable link is live for the duration of the lesson and once a teacher closes the browser window they are using, the VRroom (explorable scene) expires and students are removed from the room, creating a completely teacher-controlled environment.
Beyond Guided Group Sessions
Throughout the year we will be adding scenes to Avanti’s World monthly to encourage collaborative learning in the classroom, as well as new VRroom scenes and VRroomies, so keep an eye out for our latest updates.
Chris Bass – Avantis Education Specialist