During Science Week 2011 MissionV Education Lim will host an innovative and interactive Virtual Online Science Week Expo where primary school students will display their exhibits based around the “Chemistry of Life” theme.
September 12th saw the launch of the MissionV Virtual Worlds Network of Primary Schools, a first in Ireland and Europe. Supported by the National Centre for Technology in Education 20 primary schools nationwide took ownership of their 16 acre digital desert islands, where students connect, create and collaborate on a variety of building projects. These can be both individual and team based challenges. Students experience and explore their world via their digital representation or avatar, making this a truly immersive learning experience. MissionV also welcomed on board 18 students from the Irish Centre for Talented Youth’s Access Programme. The Centre for Academic Achievement is a programme specifically targeted at DEIS school students with high ability.
In preparation for the Science Week Expo fourth, fifth and sixth class students across Ireland have been busy designing, building and programming 3D models and large scale exhibits using MissionV’s geometric building tools, together with Scratch, the MIT developed programming tool for children. At the heart of the school network is a huge shared island which houses the MissionV Learning Hub, a constantly changing island of 64 acres. Here simulations such as the NASA moon simulation have been hosted. This allowed students the opportunity to explore a scale model of the moon surface, including hardware from the Apollo missions. All of which served to inspire the students to be even more creative and ambitious with their own Science Week designs.
During Science Week each school will host their exhibits on a rotation basis on the MissionV Learning Hub. It is hoped that the schools will host their own Science Week Event and share the Expo with their own school communities with special invitations going to parents. Schools will also be encouraged to display their exhibits to other classes with the use of an overhead projector or IWB, with the participating students acting as “in world” guides. All of the students will have the opportunity to visit the Expo where they can ask questions and discuss each other’s exhibits. There are also plans for some VIP visitors to the Expo during the week. This year marks the centenary of Marie Curie’s Nobel Prize for Chemistry and she amongst others will be dropping in for a Q&A with students.
It is anticipated that we will have over 200 students access the MissionV Learning Hub during Science Week but the viewing figures will be much higher as schools host their own events. MissionV Education will so be uploading videos of the exhibits to YouTube to bring the event to an even wider audience online.
To ignite children’s love of science and maths through immersion and engagement in a game-based immersive learning environment.
To provide stimulating individual and team-based educational challenges for students, involving critical thinking, problem solving and collaborative learning.
To introduce children to the power of programming at a young age, to inspire them to become original digital producers rather than mere consumers.
To promote and evaluate the use of virtual world technology and game based learning for the teaching of STEM at primary level.
To aid the development of 21st century skills for primary school students – 3d modelling and programming – skills that will allow these students to successfully compete in the global jobs market.