Anyone have a Second Life yet? What's so compelling about Second Life anyway? Is this the dawn of Web 3.0? What are the implications for education? Any great SL resources out there?

My avatar's name is Lucy Daffodil if you're looking for a friend there!

Lucy Gray

Tags: life, virtualworlds, Second_Life, secon, second

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Yep, I'm Second Lifing, working on a line of fantasy furniture and clothing hoping to finally learn how to make some money from my creative endeavors. LOL. You?
I have been visiting SL occasionally to explore its possibilities. From what I have seen until now is that teachers are using it to replicate the same command - control sort of classroom and I do not know why I should be sitting for 2 hours listening to someone speaking ( a podcast I take to the park when I jog would be as effective).

What I enjoy about SL, however, is that it throws different people together in situations or environments they would not usually find themselves in RL. This unpredictabitlity (at least for those involved in teaching and learning a language) and the possibility to build and act in scenarios with members from different backgrounds and cultures is what makes it interesting.

I cannot see it being used at school...at least at the school as we have it now, because SL is, like all synchronous events, very time-consuming (classes last usually 50 minutes and if you are involved in a project you would need much more than that). It is expensive and bandwidth hungry (heavy and difficult to install when there is a school network with firewalls ..etc , especially as there are new versions being created all the time).
My avatar is Bee Kerouac if you want to make contact.
I have been exploring Second Life a little lately. I am still trying to figure it all out, so I am not sure I have any deep thoughts to share yet. I have been enjoying exploring some of the museums and scientific exhibits and I think they are of value. My avatar's name is Alima DeVinna if you would like to look me up. That's a picture of her as my avatar here, although she has recently gotten a new hairdo.
Hi, I too have a 2nd Life, well almost, in fact I'm still stuck on orientation Island, I like to blame this on a slow connection, but in fact I find the interface quite daunting. This has come as a shock as until now I considered myself quite web savvy, however it seems that the sheer multitude of possibilities and a total inability to read maps, is going to keep me effectively locked out.
Hi Alja, thanks for the offer, I think I will take you up on it when things quieten down in first life.
Susan :-)
Hi everyone,

Sorry - coming late to this. I am interested in the potential of using Second Life for language teaching and learning. We recently held two in-world discussions about this if anyone else is interested - the transcripts of the chats are on my blog : language learning & SL pt 1 language learning & SL pt 2

I also found the discussion here fascinating, especially as so many people have tried it out and the comments are informed by this experience.

I think we have a lot to learn about how best to utilise these type of environments, abd I do think it's worth pursuing. I am involved in doing just this, helping the British Council create a space in the Teen Grid of Second Life, to encourage English language learning. I'd be happy to discuss this more with anyone who's interested - contact me here, or look me up in SL (Baldric Commons).

There are also some very interesting initiatives going on at the moment - one of which is the call for virtual quests (basically, Second Life 'webquests'), which is being held as a competition.

See the details below :

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Second Life Education UK - Virtual Quest Competition. April/May 2007.

Education UK is a group of UK educationalists who have developed an island in Second Life (http://secondlife.com/), to explore the use of virtual worlds for learning and teaching. To launch the concept of Virtual Quests within Second Life and begin the process of collecting quests developed to communicate the idea of Virtual Quests among the educational community, Education UK invites entries for the Virtual Quest Competition.

We are awarding prizes of $5,000 Linden dollars to the three most innovative and best constructed Virtual Quests, in any curricular area, for formal or informal learning delivery.

What is a Virtual Quest?

In the mid 1990s, Bernie Dodge and colleagues at the San Diego State University developed the concept of a WebQuest – a structured learning activity where most or all of the information was gained by the learner from the Internet.

Education UK has applied the same pedagogical model to create the concept of the Virtual Quest, a focussed activity where most or all of the information gathered by learners is gained within the Second Life environment.

Further information on developing a Virtual Quest and sample Virtual Quests can be found in the Virtual Quest area of Education UK island in Second Life – Education UK 229, 38, 21.

Who can enter?

The competition is international and open to all educators from any sector within SL.

How will the competition be judged?

The winners will be chosen by a team of international educationalists. Applications will be judged according to the following criteria:

Innovation and creativity
Appropriate use of Second Life as a learning environment
Pedagogy
Evaluation approach
Quality of support materials
Presentation

How do I apply?

Please send the following in electronic format to chris@sleducationuk.net no later than Friday 18th May 2007(17.00 GMT)

Completed application form
Your Virtual Quest in Word format. If using multimedia, please be very careful to ensure your file sizes are not too large [image size [jpg], video [.mov] audio [mp3/4] etc.
Any supporting material in electronic format.

Each Virtual Quest entry must be complete in terms of the six stages [introduction, task, process, resources, evaluation and conclusion]. In addition, the seventh stage – ‘support pages’, should also be included to provide any additional guidance for tutors and support materials for learners

What happens if my entry wins?

Winning entries will be announced at the ‘Second Life International Education Conference’ on the 25th May. http://slbestpractices2007.wikispaces.com/]
Winners will also be notified by email or in-world IM.
Winning entries will be displayed in the Virtual Quest area of Education UK.
Winners will also be invited to give a “virtual interview” which will appear on the Education UK website at: www.sleducationuk.net

Competition Terms & Conditions

1.The competition is open to international entries from any educator within Second Life. All entries should be in English as the international language [although we recognise that to deploy locally, may necessitate translation into mother tongue]
2.It is a condition of entry that all entrants consent to their Virtual Quest being published in the Virtual Quest area of Education UK island. Copyright of the Virtual Quest remains with the creator.
3.Winners will receive a $5,000 Linden dollar prize award. This will be paid directly to them. Any equivalent award in US dollars can be paid via Paypal if required.
4.All entries must be received in electronic format by the closing date of Friday 18th May 2007(17.00 GMT). Responsibility cannot be accepted by Education UK for undelivered entries.
5.Education UK’s decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into by Education UK in relation to that decision.
6.By entering the competition all participants will be deemed to have accepted and be bound by the rules and requirements set out in the competition material.
7.The competition promoter is Education UK. Enquiries relating to the competition should be sent to: chris@sleducationuk.net with the subject heading ‘Virtual Quest Competition’.
Hi Meg from Classroom 2.0 I am over at Eduisland (SL) Meg Writer http://slurl.com/secondlife/megwriter/80/27/22/ I sent you an IM in Second Life. I love it! Kathy Schrock is a friend in real life, and she really helped me when I got started. Now I live a few doors from her in SL. I see amazing possibilities for professional development, and teaching and learning!
Hey Lucy!

Four school districts (one of which is mine) just bought an island (Lighthouse Learning Island) in SL and plan to conduct tons of RL professional development in SL this coming school year!

I know you are probably a member of my SL group "K-12 Educators", but, if anyone else is interested in being notified about events that will be happening on Lighthouse Learning Island and other items of SL interest to K-12, please join that group in SL!

Kathy Schrock (SL Kathy Dryburgh)
Hi Lucy,
This question posed a lot of discussion! I just joined SL after attending the NECC07 conference in Atlanta. I saw a wonderful presentation on how middle school students were using it. I did a search on Amazon.com and ordered a book to help me out (haven't got it yet). However, the stories I'm hearing from educators are probably the best resources I'm finding. I'm still wandering around exploring, a little lost. I'm a member of the ISTE group and my avatar is TinaM Lane. I too have posted a similar question on my blog and would like to hear more ideas. I'm going to do a presentation to our administration about SL, so if anyone would like to respond to my blog at http://mstina.wordpress.com/
it would be greatly appreciated. Good luck Lucy!
My avatar is Dosa Dagger.
Can any body lead me to good educational site in the world.

- Seshagiri
Hi everyone, nice to see so many familiar faces and avatar names! I wanted to respond to Dosa and others by telling you about a great, free service I'm providing with my colleague and friend Nancy Sharoff ... free temporary living space in SL for K-20 educators. Read all about it here:

http://groups.google.com/group/slolar-central

and here (my blog):

http://www.storyofmysecondlife.com/?p=200

and here (Nancy's blog):

http://slolar-central.blogspot.com/

Specifically, if you are looking for great sites to visit, the best person in the metaverse is Macsmom Alcott (Jen Wagner of Technospud RL fame), she does tours every Thursday night, coincident with the ISTE Socials on ISTE Island.

We are just getting our July residents settled in - lots of people on vacation apparently! :) Stop by when you can or IM me or Laelia Laval (that's Nancy) for more info.

Finally, some pics:

http://flickr.com/photos/kjarrett/sets/72157600276430332/

It sounds silly, but, you HAVE NOT lived virtually until you've had your avatar on a dance floor! It is ... HILARIOUS!

See you in-world,

-kj-
Mr. Kevin (KJ Hax)
I have downloaded the Second Life software - 1.17.3.0 and installed in my computer.
I could not get to Eduisland through slurl site.
In the Second Life software, I clicked search - places and entered Eduisland II
Now I could reach Eduisland.
I selected Eduisland's automated tour. I am moving and viewing the entire Eduisland from the sky.
But, whom to approach to tell me what is available in this island? who is my tourist guide?
Mr. Kevin (KJ Hax), since I am in world at Indian time 6.13 p.m., I am not able to meet any one of you over there? Is there any provision to help night (American time) visitors?

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