Virtual Reality Applications

I was watching an application, Tilt Brush with HTC Vive from Immersive Minds: “Theater Scene with Tilt Brush”.  I was thinking about some real applications for Virtual Reality in classrooms, especially upper elementary and middle school.

Watch the video see what you think. You are watching Stephen Reid, of,  design a story using tools with TiltBrush( software and an HTC Vive Virtual Reality headset.   In a classroom, a teacher could design the setting for the story, real-time or film the video ahead of time and play it during class. Students could create their own stories from this surreal prompt as they are watching the video generated like Reid’s sample.  It would be fascinating to see students use this prompt to make their own creative writings.  I would love to be a fly on the wall and watch students brainstorming topics as they are writing.

Additional applications could include a sort of “Yes, and…..” from improvisation activities.  Teachers could give students opportunity to feed the “beast” for a creative writing prompt.

“Give me a character name.”

“What does the character look like?”

“When does this story take place?”

A teacher could create the setting based on these prompts for students to generate stories. I could see this as a super engaging activity for a classroom, maybe even use it as a reward; story starters and student read aloud activities could be really engaging for the class.   Although, even as I am saying this, I am thinking really the power would be putting the tools into students hands.  Students could design stories for each other or use the tool to make their stories come to life.

What if teachers used these prompts for at home writing?  There is not enough time in the day to add on one more thing.  Instead, creative writing could supplement work at home or it could turn into a family project; students could watch the video and then write at home.

My brain started swimming with possibilities with using VR in elementary and middle school classrooms, even with only one unit;  I think that is the point of acquiring new technology.  You get excited about the possibilities and if you can find an application, you realize you have an tool to inspire students. A tool like this does have a steep price point and an even steeper learning curve.  However, when you start embracing technology in the classroom, it is hard to stop with one new tool.  Teachers look for more tools to engage learners in creative activities.  Sometimes, bringing the tools into the classroom and having a lesson plan or unit well thought out means students will  extend the learning even beyond your intent and that is the best outcome for any lesson.


Here is another application for spatial learning:

The HTC Vive uses .obj files and so does a 3D printer.  What if students imported their 3D print file into the HTC VR software to actually visualize the object they are printing?  Imagine a student stepping inside their designed object.  Students then exercise spatial reasoning as they are experiencing and object they have created.   I have had many students 3D print something without realizing the scope or size of the object.  Imagine stepping inside that object to see how it would print?

So here goes: I have built on Stephen Reid’s example.  Please, please add your input  and let’s start some conversations around some more innovations in the classroom.


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