Back to Reality
It is easy to give out a load of VR kit and watch people enjoy themselves. We could easily do that here but we really would be missing a trick, losing the potential impact on life chances that we have when children re so engaged. So our VR/AR day is a mix of activities. During the morning we worked as a co-ordinated team overseen by two Mayoresses (Erin and Katie) to create a new settlement on a Goldilocks planet far in the future. Of course we can’t actually go there so Minecraft Education edition was the perfect substitute and a great opportunity to discuss how real world developments are often created in VR before a brick is ever laid. Being an essential cog in a well co-ordinated machine is a key part of teamwork and we discussed how effectively we had worked by the time we had created our new world.
After lunch we had more hands on using Google Expeditions, Oculus Go and the HTC Vive kit. Many of the children had never used this type of equipment before and it was important that we highlighted the use of such environments in real world applications as well as the fun gaming side. Forgetting to mention Teesside University’s world class reputation for courses focussed on this type of programming and design would have been a crime and was not missed! Acklam Whin, St Patrick’s and Saltburn children who attended today really seemed to enjoy their experiences but hopefully more than that they understand how important virtualisation is and will be in the future, potentially their futures.