Posts Tagged With: EDTECH 531

Cloud Party: Cloud Hopper

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I captured this place because I think it represents the creative options in Cloud Party.  I wandered around, created some stuff, basically it’s a open empty field waiting to be filled with imagination!


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This place was really neat!  I liked how it felt like I was in a “upper class” world and was still able to create some items to place in my world.  Who would have thought adding a sofa “over there” would be so fun!  This place is a great meet and greet place also, a place where the conversation can go to a deeper level too.

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Now this world was really fun!  Start the race and jump on a hover bike it’s that easy!  This world showed the “gaming” aspect of Cloud Party.  It’s not only a place to socialize and meet but to also play and compete.  I thought there was barely any noticeable lag and that helps to create a great experience.

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EDTECH 531 Cloud Party

  1. What are the benefits and drawbacks of using a virtual world app like Cloud Party that is connected to Facebook for educational purposes? How about in a cloud based environment?

    The benefits to me would be the constant connectivity and ease of access that Cloud Party creates.  Being connected to Facebook means it’s connected to the world.  Students are able to check in frequently and meet up a lot easier.  One drawback may be the restriction for having to have a Facebook account.  Although most of the world is on there, I still have many students who aren’t.  Cloud based environment would be beneficial depending on the environment that is chosen.  Each environment has different objectives and I think their would be many benefits for using those environments.

  2. How does Cloud Party mimic some of the other virtual world environments that you are familiar with?

    Cloud party is like a simplified version of Second Life to me.  It’s a lot easier to use and a lot more limited.  The ease of access in simple and doesn’t take much to create.  Minecraft is similar in it’s simple way to create, but Cloud Party brings more of the virtual feel with its avatars.  It feels like a bit of a mix of Second Life and Minecraft.

  3. What are your initial thoughts about this application as a medium in education? Do you have any positive or negative expectations?

    My initial thoughts are that this application is easy to use and easy to access.  Anything the makes it easier on the learner I think helps the learning process in virtual worlds so the constant reminder of “bugs” isn’t interrupting the learning experience.  Cloud party seems ideal for that. My expectations are positive with using it as a medium in education.  The ability to choose and explore I think are great readinesses in learning.  Cloud Party gives the learner that ability instantly and with the simplicity to build, teachers can create some amazing learning experiences for their students.

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EDTECH 531 Blowing up the grade book



In this video Chris Haskell argues with stunning results a revolutionary way of teaching and learning. As the title suggests it’s to get rid of the grade book and make learning a game.

I thought it was interesting how the argument of having homework assignments assume that each student has the same home environment.  I never thought that homework assignments were unequal but it really is.

The idea that homework doesn’t have due dates is interesting and the fact that “triage” is mentioned makes sense to all educators.  Giving students choice is a great way to instantly let students feel like they’re in control.  “The winning condition being in reach” is great because this way will help students progress to the next step and be successful.

The change of the metrics of schools is a bold goal but necessary.  I like how he said, “education has changed more in 10 years than in the last 100 years” because with the technology boost the world has changed and schools should too.  How to make those changes in a worldwide learning setting or even the US will be slower because of all the regulations and laws and perceptions.  How will parents feel that their kids are playing games at school?  The change will require a paradigm shift that learning is the goal rather than passing.  I believe the students will embrace this change quicker than the faculty or parents.

One concern with this system is procrastination, if students have no due dates then how many “late nighters” will be experienced when the time to be done comes?  The ways the quests progress with levels is a step towards fixing this, maybe there’s a way to have the quests leave after a certain amount of time and that experience can’t be earned afterwards.  I think procrastination for the students’ triage will be key in the success of this learning schema.

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Mine Craft-The Big picture

Recently I had the opportunity to go into a number of Mine Craft world created and monitored by Lucas Gillispie.  Up to this point I had found Mine Craft entertaining and full of educational possibilities.  Lucas showed me a world that was incredible!  Students were actively engaged in creating their worlds, some had leadership roles in the world, others were aspiring to become higher ranked, and all of them were completely invested. As with any virtual environment there are some technical requirements and considerations with using Mine Craft.  Some of the schools has classroom computers and servers provided for the students to use, other students had access at home.  The students were using the school computers to create worlds and explanations for learning activities.  In the classroom setting, students were watched over and encouraged by their instructors.  In the virtual world, the instructor and helpers would observe the conduct and happenings in the worlds.  It was interesting to think of the impact the environments had the schools they served. At first glance it may seem like a nice program or a fun club but the schools that have implemented Mine Craft as a learning tool have had huge success.  One example is the art world created by art students  The “epic” sized creations and creativity was amazing!  Students also implemented math skills and geometry to design and engineer their projects.  The response to each of these situations of using Mine Craft in schools was positive.  As a Seminary Teacher I don’t see very much feasibility of using Mine Craft in my apartment but I can see the impact and progress they make in learning.  As virtual worlds become more available I can see more integration in the classrooms.  The big picture take away most meaningful to me and the people in my educational community I believe is the success that Mine Craft and virtual tools can bring if properly used as learning tools.  The accessibility and entertainment of Mine Craft make it have so many possibilities for education.  I would like to see some more school integration in my community of tools like Mine Craft because students have a desire to “play” these games and if carefully tailored video gaming can go from a waste of time to an effective educational experience.

Categories: -2.2 Audiovisual Technologies, -2.3 Computer-Based Technologies, -3.1 Media Utilization, -4.3 Delivery System Management | Tags: | Leave a comment

Second Life

What is Second Life? The title describes really well what it is, it is a virtual world that reflects our own where one can create an avatar to live a second life.  To state succinctly, it’s a game that virtually mimics the real world.  The overall usability of Second Life is very easy and accessible.  It’s free to use (although items may be purchased) and anyone with minimum cpu requirements and internet can log on and play.  There are a lot of possibilities for SL in the future and in my future.  Even though it mimics our world, the limitations are taken away and the freedom of imagination is unleashed. From an educator’s standpoint SL can be very useful in creating learning situations. I’m not sure how much I will actually get into SL as a hobby or game, but I see it more as a tool for learning.  As I discover more about SL I may find myself living more virtually than in reality


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Edtech 531-Exploring the Big Island

Exploring the Big Island Voice thread discussion

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EDTECH 531-My Alt, My Avatar

Consider the implications of Dr. Bailenson research and thought on the education of YOUR students. What takeaways do you have about the impactVirtual worlds on the future of education, as described in the video.

I found this video very interesting because of how the study shows the connection between behavior in real life and in virtual worlds through avatars.  The conclusion I came to is that there is some real value in giving my students certain virtual situations to help them to learn.  I think there is a big connection between behavior and learning, and there seems to be a reflection of real life behavior in virtual worlds.  If exercising your avatar more by moving yourself more, loses virtual and physical weight, then putting teaching scenarios or role playing into the virtual world can help educate my students to respond to those situations in real life.

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