Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) are buzzwords that every educator wants to know more about. They are two distinct functions. Kathy Schrock, columnist for Discovery Education explains:
Augmented reality layers computer-generated enhancements on top of an existing reality to make it more meaningful through the ability to interact with it.
Virtual reality is a computer-generated simulation of real life… It immerses users by making them feel they are experiencing the simulated reality firsthand.
The differences are actually pretty simple. Virtual means experiencing a world that doesn’t exist. Augmented means adding something virtual to the physical world.
- 900 VR Expeditions — requires the Expeditions app
- Class VR
- InMind VR–a sicientific VR game
- Jurassic VR–Aptosaurus VR experience to experience a dinosaur up close
- NearPod VR
- Tour Creator–make a VR tour in Google
- Timelooper. This one will take you back to important moments in history from all around the world.
- Titans of Space app will take your students to the moon.
- Trench Experience VR will take you into the trenches in WWI.
- UnimersiveVR–learn with VR
- VR tours of museums
Ways to use VR
- VR field trips
- for students with Special Needs — The Jackson School in Victoria, Australia has been using the Oculus Rift to help students with special needs and the Silesian University of Technology in Silesia Poland is doing therapeutic exercises with autistic students using virtual reality technology.
- experience careers first hand
- time travel to historic events
- explore the human body
- feed curiosity
Watch this student exploring xxx with VR:
More on VR
Jacqui Murray has been teaching K-18 technology for 30 years. She is the editor/author of over a hundred tech ed resources including a K-12 technology curriculum, K-8 keyboard curriculum, K-8 Digital Citizenship curriculum. She is an adjunct professor in tech ed, Master Teacher, webmaster for four blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice, CSTA presentation reviewer, freelance journalist on tech ed topics, contributor to NEA Today, and author of the tech thrillers, To Hunt a Sub and Twenty-four Days. You can find her resources at Structured Learning.