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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Lucy, my district blocks second life so I have started using a program called active worlds.
I find it interesting that school districts are so intent on blocking access to potentially some of the most effective tools for learning. I have been an SL resident for about 4 months now, but like a previous commenter, have been involved in 3D since the VRML days. I am in total agreement with his comments that the power of virtual worlds is not in the ability to hold regular classes in virtual classrooms, but to create engaging environments that allow for exploration and discovery by the learner in a more informal but engaging way. My area is mathematics/physics, and I have to say, that as I started to get more involved in building and simple scripting, I became acutely aware of how much rich mathematics I was using. By making objects "physical", I also became aware of the rich physics that could be explored. (I nearly crushed my avatar with a giant pyramid by accident the first time I explored "physical properties"). I would say that we are on the cusp of some very important events related to Virtual Worlds, that will make it easier and more viable for educators to begin exploration. Some of the biggest drawbacks in SL for educators is cost,lack of control of the environment, and the split between the teen grid and the adult grid. A number of initiatives that have been underway for some time are now approaching maturity. Sun micro systems is in the early stages of the release of their open source Virtual World platform called Project Wonderland. The Croquet consortium is also in the early stages of release of an open source Virtual World platform Croquet/Cobalt. Finally, several OpenSim projects are or have set up grids that can be accessed with the SL client and offer an (somewhat rougher) environment similar to that of Second Life (TM). Even more interesting is the work being done by the Media Grid immersive education initiative. They are laying the groundwork and establishing some common standards that are heading in the direction of being able to develop educational 3D content on one platform and have it used on the others as well. (That is just the tip of the iceberg). Whether one is in favour of Virtual worlds in education or not, the next couple of years will be very interesting.
Your posting definitely peaked my interest. I found site and joined. Where is the best place to start as a newbie? I can see my ELLs having a great time here using English.

Wow! I poke around tonight and see what happens. Any practical suggestions you can provide a novice would be greatly appreciated:)

Denise

www.ellteacherpros.com

www.teachingsuccesseswithells.blogspot.com
I am interested in Second Life for teaching and learning languages. My avatar's name is Dorothea Graves

Lucy Haagen
I am interested in Second Life for teaching and learning languages. My avatar's name is Dorothea Graves

Lucy Haagen
We are going to use Second Life as a place where students could generate content of their exhibits. For my one class, I am going to have my students create visual narratives in second life--virtual visual literacy projects.

I am not so certain I am goin gto move my course into second life as the classroom space; I personally see SL as more of a tool (like chalk) to use for specific assignments, projects, and activities.

It might be more useful for simulations. I built an amphitheatre project and will be using it as a place where students can present their own content; create their own spaces for learning.
Did i say CHALK? lol

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