Course Units: What Teachers Can Expect
- Video Introduction
- Step by Step Walk-through
- Lesson Files and Teaching Resources
- Assessments of Prior Knowledge
- Student Projects and Homework
- Video Links
- Additional Resources
The Video Introduction to the Unit sets the stage for not only the learning environment but also experiential learning opportunities the students will explore. Each video provides a detailed introduction to the big idea of the unit and the aligned expectations for the students. We offer an overview of the different VR experiences that supplement student learning outside instructional time, suggestions for guiding student inquiry, multiple talking points to drive student discussions and strategies to address common misconceptions related to the unit content.
Step by Step Walk-through
The step by step walk-through is located under the teacher resources for each lesson. This document scaffolds out the learning experiences, actions taken by the instructor, and actions for students. It is important to note that this resource is considered to be a guide or suggested sequence of learning activities. but you as a teacher have the autonomy to modify or improve with additional creative activities. This flexibility is essential for meeting the diverse needs of your students but also the ability to pivot and address the individual interests of each class within the content, maximizing your student’s intrinsic motivation to learn.
Lesson Files and Teaching Resources
All PowerPoints are provided within the unit. They are accessible to you in both your VR classroom and on the LMS platform. Students also have access to course PowerPoints in the LMS to allow for studying, note taking and research. By making this resource available to all students outside of the instructional time students will be able to utilize text to speech and other learning assisted software. An underlying theme of the curricula is to reinforce age appropriate habits for organizing information. The PowerPoints are regularly used as the source of content for note taking and other learning activities. For this reason, all information and supplemental resources are written at the age appropriate reading index as calculated by the Flesch–Kincaid readability tests.
Assessments of Prior Knowledge
Each unit offers students an opportunity to reflect on their prior understanding of that unit's big ideas. This resource serves two purposes: first for the student to actively engage their prior knowledge, setting them up to extend their understanding to the next level. Secondly it allows the teacher to diagnose any potential misconceptions or areas of faulty understanding and formulate individualized learning plans and group activities for the unit.
Student Projects and Homework
Student projects and homework resemble that of a traditional school environment. These age appropriate activities provide students an opportunity to practice and reflect on their VR classroom experience. In order to minimize screen time for our students most activities happen offline or even outside. Students then upload the specified artifact to the LMS for teacher review. As the instructor for this course, we recommend that you occasionally highlight student submissions during the VR instruction time to promote an intrinsic motivation for homework. Expectations for student work are consistent across grade level courses and schedules are aligned to prevent overloading the student’s afterschool time commitments. All activities are designed to allow the student to work independently without parental support. At times parental involvement is strongly encouraged but it is never a requirement for participation. Examples of student projects include student notebooks, journaling, hands-on activities, assigned readings and working math problem sets.
Video links include content in both 360-degree experiences and traditional 2D formats. During an instructional VR session, we encourage you to use both types of content to simulate a student's prior knowledge, supplement lesson content, promote student discussions and reinforce student learning objectives.
- The 2D video links are made available to students outside of the VR experience through the LMS to facilitate individualized student needs with respect to closed captioning and the student’s diverse language needs.
- Within the VR instructional environment video assets take on a life of their own, creating an immersive learning environment that can transcend space and time. By pausing 360 video students have the ability to investigate their soundings with a variety of tools. Video holograms of content area experts offer you supplemental content area instruction that is in perfect alignment to the lesson and corresponding standards.
- These videos were developed to alleviate the need for you to be the sole dispenser of information, allowing you to focus on your role as a guide through the inquiry process.
- Additionally, instruction provided to the students through these holograms provides the students an opportunity to connect to a greater learning community that extends beyond that of the course and establishes a precedence for lifelong learning.
Additional resources are specific to each unit and can be found in the LMS. We strongly encourage to deploy these resources with students to provide enrichment that extends beyond the scope of the course content. With respect to differentiated instruction, these resources can allow you to take your students to the next level or provide additional resources during remediation. For this reason, they have been clustered into two categories: enrichment and remediation. It is important to note that we should do our best to ensure that students are perceived as competent by their peers. For students using resources for remediation it is equally important for them to share their ideas, contributing to the group in their own way.