Educators sound off on 3D in the classroom

“The problem here is that many of us find trying to look at 3D videos … is not something that is done well and/or clearly. If you wear glasses, it is usually a frustrating experience. … I do not think that this technology is a practical concern yet—give it another five years. We have had such a rush to other technologies that have resulted in much money spent, and not nearly a good enough payback for it. Too many teachers have digital resources that are underutilized. I dare say that, as usual, advertising hype has outpaced real utility for many products.” —George F. Bischoff, III MS science teacher, Nash-Rocky Mount Early College High School, Rocky Mount, N.C.

Do you really need it?

“Again, we are running after technology as if it solves all our problems. Technology is a tool, not a silver bullet (unless you are a vendor, and have a lot at stake). I wish educators would understand they are treated like medical doctors: courted by representatives of an industry which exists to improve their bottom line—not education’s. Educators’ time, like medical doctors’ time, is wasted by a never-ending flood of new products. One has barely been unwrapped and there is the next better ‘thingemabob.’ In the mean time, our children barely know how to read, write, and do basic math. But we sure have created an awesome set of button-pushers!” —Rudy Schellekens, Muscatine, Iowa

If students like it, then why not?

“When thinking about how to incorporate technology into the classroom, an effective teacher must begin with one question: What piece of technology is engaging the student outside of the classroom? Anyone that has been to the movie theater in the recent months has seen 3D movies becoming more and more commonplace. With this in mind, I have begun using Adaptive Curriculum’s 3D models in my science classrooms. One particular model allows students and teachers an in-depth look into the human body. Using an easy-to-use interface, students take a model cadaver and can easily maneuver around 360 degrees to see exactly how each layer of the human body is constructed. By removing each piece or body system one at a time on the 3D model, students are able to see how body systems work together to maintain homeostasis. The 3D technology in this program has allowed me as a teacher to introduce my students into deeper analysis of the human body that might otherwise be cheesy or moderately amusing at best.” —Chris Brown, science teacher and dean of students, Shoal River Middle School,
Crestview, Fla.

See also:

3D technology helps autistic kids learn to read

Research: 3D content can help improve learning

How to use 3D in the classroom effectively

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