« NEXT WEEK: NWN GOES BACK TO SCHOOL! | Main | THE SCHOOL OF SECOND LIFE, PART TWO: BRAD LUPIS »

Monday, May 10, 2004

THE SCHOOL OF SECOND LIFE, PART ONE: MATT FARBER

Over the next three days, I'll be present some case studies of Second Life as an educational tool, based on interviews I've conducted for New World Notes. These are intended to supplement the talk I'll be giving today at The Education Arcade in Los Angeles.

MATT FARBER, ON ARCHITECTING A VIRTUAL RAMP FOR THE DISABLED

Matt Farber is a graduate student at a major Southwestern university.
The class he refers to employs Second Life as a teaching tool.

My only [prior] experience with video games are car and motorcycle race games. My undergrad was in business, but I am now getting my graduate degree in architecture. The class was entitled Designing Digital Communities. [This] class counts as a planning course for me. I have to admit, I did not spend much time in here building stuff, which is what you would probably think is natural for an architect… [F]or me, it was more about allowing the bigger community the chance to access this space. I thought this would be a great environment for everyone to enjoy, and that it would be a good social place for people who don't often get out much… [So] I guess my project was maybe more focused on what the [digital] community could be used for.

I have worked with some Special Olympic kids, before I went back to school, and I thought it would be great if I could have some meaningful interactions with them, without actually being there. I tried to introduce some members of the disabled community to Second Life. I visited some of the local special education students, and worked with them individually.

One girl had cerebral palsy; she was in a wheelchair. She had a helper who did the keyboard stuff for her. She had a good time. Some guy was hitting on her when she was in world. I think she was flattered. It was probably neat for her to be considered "normal", at least for a little while.

I didn't ask her about that, but I think she really liked [walking around the world]. I hope next time to have a joystick, so that she can have a more complete experience-- she had a hard time using the arrow keys. Mainly [she] just walked around, looking for people to talk with… and fly. She also told me she thought the game was giving her another set of hands, as well; it was really cool

I also worked with a guy who was autistic. But [he] was really not very social. He was sort of frantic and wanted to explore everything. So he ended up looking around for about 90 minutes, it was crazy… I think Second Life for him was a giant treasure chest, just waiting for him to explore. He had done these incredible drawings on a chalkboard, the day before I got there, of various city skylines. I think he is interested in 3D spaces, so SL was a playground for him.

They were interested in the communication aspect of what this environment offered. The students are only allowed to stay in public education until they are 22, and then they are on their own. So they thought that maybe this place would allow them to stay in touch with them (the teachers) as well as their classmates…. They teach life skills as well as vocations, so I think Second Life has a lot to offer.

I guess the biggest surprise for me was the reaction I got from the teachers. They were really curious and supportive of what I was trying to do. I was somewhat shocked that they could see the potential so quickly. I kind of knew the students would have a good time, because Second Life is sort of like a video game, but I thought the teachers might be a bit skeptical, not really understanding what would be possible, but it was sort of like a conga line when I came to visit. The teachers would call their co-workers to come and check this out. One of the first teachers I met was and is very excited about what he could do with this place. He really wanted to get a couple of his students in here at once, but we had some hardware issues to deal with first…

I think that Second Life can become whatever it needs to be for a particular person. I was a bit unsure about SL and what the purpose of such a place could be. But after working with these students I began to realize that I was using SL in my own way. I don't think I am making too much sense, but… seeing these students interact in their own way made me realize that SL could adapt to many different possibilities.

Posted at 04:49 AM | Permalink

TrackBack

TrackBack URL for this entry:
http://www.typepad.com/services/trackback/6a00d8341ccd9653ef00e5505503058834

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference THE SCHOOL OF SECOND LIFE, PART ONE: MATT FARBER:

» Games Can Educate--Seriously! from Clickable Culture
I don't know about you, but I only truly absorb information I'm interested in. That's why during a high-school history class I had to change real-world nations into fantasy [Read More]

Tracked on May 11, 2004 6:10:11 AM

» Some thoughts from KYLEBUN
[Read More]

Tracked on Nov 14, 2005 3:35:14 PM

» Giftrust Geared For The Long Term (Investor's Business Daily) from James Stowers,
started in 1983 by James Stowers, founder of the big mutual fund complex, as a way for [Read More]

Tracked on May 26, 2006 4:22:17 AM

» Innovation: What Thomas Edison, Henry Ford and PostcardMania Have In Common from 15, 2006)
of America. (PRWEB May 15, 2006) Trackback URI: http://www.prweb.com/zingpr.php/UHJvZi1GYWx1LVpldGEtRmFsdS1IYWxmLVplcm8= [Read More]

Tracked on May 26, 2006 11:27:39 AM

» The XHTML/CSS template phase of my new blog, part 2 from href=links.html
id=contacta href=contact.html title=Contact informationcontact/a/li [Read More]

Tracked on May 27, 2006 8:45:46 AM

» McGinley to step down in next election from has announced
will not be contesting the Donegal South West constituency in the next General Election. [Read More]

Tracked on Jun 9, 2006 7:58:50 AM

» Steve Francis traded to Knicks? from and shoot too
is virtually no way this trade “helps” them - on the court or financially for the future.  There are still a [Read More]

Tracked on Jun 11, 2006 5:19:20 PM

» Japan vs Brazil Half-Time Score from by http://www.worldcupadvice.com
reports, game previews, great free games with thousands in cash prizes, sportsbook [Read More]

Tracked on Jun 28, 2006 2:27:19 PM

» States and Capitals from All USA States
State information resource links to state homepage, symbols, flags, maps, constitutions, ... All Rights Reserved. Press Ctrl - D to bookmark this page. ... [Read More]

Tracked on Jul 18, 2006 10:20:54 AM

» RB Toolbar from rbtoolbar
RB Toolbar - уникальный и наиболее перспективный и продуманный проект... [Read More]

Tracked on Jul 20, 2006 10:55:42 AM

» Medical Dictionary from Bestbarrel
Searchable dictionary created by Dr. ALFRED. [Read More]

Tracked on Jul 25, 2006 8:07:25 PM

» Bvlgari from Bvlgari Watches
Great Saving On Bvlgari Watches Bulgari Watch Bvlgari Assioma, Bulgari Zero1, Bulgari Watch Tubagas, Bvlgari Diagono Aluminium, ... [Read More]

Tracked on Aug 5, 2006 1:52:51 AM

» burberry from Burberry Perfume
Buy Burberry perfumes and aftershaves from the best UK shops online. Click on one of the products listed below to compare prices to find the best price to ... [Read More]

Tracked on Aug 5, 2006 2:29:28 AM

» Wiki: Search Results from MostDor
Search Results · WelcomeVisitors . . . . . . WhatIsWiki WhatIsWiki . . . . . . WhatIsWiki. 2 pages found out of 22 pages searched. ... [Read More]

Tracked on Aug 5, 2006 7:37:27 AM

» Popular phrase from Map Directory
A search engine directory map... [Read More]

Tracked on Aug 12, 2006 11:18:28 AM

» Illinois Signs to Advise of Contraceptive Rights from signs be posted
that dispense birth control telling women about their right to buy contraceptives. [Read More]

Tracked on Aug 14, 2006 9:00:53 AM

Comments

Breast enhancement pills Breast enhancement pills

attract women pheromones attract women pheromones

Ultimate Colon cleanser Ultimate Colon cleanser


natural breast enhancement, natural breast enhancement

herbal penis enlargement, herbal penis enlargement

Posted by: Rod at May 31, 2007 4:31:00 AM

Thank's for the very informative site, these sites are some I would recommend.

For Online Casino slots and online casino try this La Isla Casino, for more online casino slots and online slots try Slots Kings.

If Bingo is your thing try Bingo Online News for online bingo and internet bingo, internet casino slots and slots information to be found

on Slots Online News. If you like to play bingo online Red7Bingo is the best internet bingo to be found on a online bingo site. For online poker

we recommend Nett Poker. Street Slots is the leading site for Slots, Video Slots and Online Slots. Nett Casino have all the info on casino poker

and many other online casino games in a Norwegian Casino Portal about online casino. Craps is a game of fun and excitement, play craps in CrapsRoom.com

the number one website for online craps.

online casino slot machine online casino slot machine Hope you enjoy them.

Posted by: slots man at Sep 3, 2007 5:40:48 AM