The post-1990’s generation, Gen Z, doesn’t remember a world without digital technology. In fact, the children of millennials, born after 2010, are sometimes described as Generation Alpha. They are poised to be the most tech-savvy demographic to date, with a pathway to success that is largely shaped by video, e-books, podcasts, voice command, and the advent of virtual reality (VR) headsets and augmented reality (AR).
As our business and personal lives increasingly merge with the digital environment, the progression to a more technologically focused model in the classroom is gaining momentum. This trend is reflected in the growing demand for VR and AR applications as equipment becomes cheaper and easier to use while proving its value as an educational tool.
Even though technology has allowed knowledge to be more easily attained for more people, there are roadblocks to learning that must be surmounted. Traditional teaching methods too often focus on providing facts and delivering large amounts of information. The result? A bored, disengaged room of students who are not sure about what they are learning and why.
Technology and creativity can work in tandem to make students more engaged with the educational content.
Education is most effective when students show curiosity, interest, and passion in their studies. This is where VR, AR, and immersive technology are becoming a powerful educational tool. Let’s consider some examples.
A class without borders
From the perspective of cultural understanding and global awareness, teachers are starting to use VR and other forms of immersive technology to bring their lessons to life. Immersive technology allows students to expand their physical world with virtual or simulated features that can, for example, transport them to a different time and place. Teachers can then create a much deeper and enhanced learning experience.
Imagine a curriculum based on the exploration of the moon and a VR experience that would allow your students to walk in the shoes, or boots rather, of Neil Armstrong. Or how about a World War I history lesson that gives students a realistic look into the experience of a soldier? A company doing this well is Trench Experience VR, a free application. More VR apps are entering the market every day.