Friday, March 29th, 2013 | Author:

I loved the websites brainnook.com and minyanland.com!  It is nice to see that there are free resources on the web for extended learning tools that anyone can access.  Not all families can afford different learning software’s and game systems, such as LeapFrog and VTech, and I feel as though this is an excellent substitution.  When I first accessed these two websites my immediate thought was how juvenile they both looked.  However, after setting up a profile and getting started I found it hard to stop playing the games on each site.

I’m sure students will catch on that the games are actual learning tools but it gives them a goal to work towards something, whether it be accumulating money in minyanland or points and badges in brainnook.  It is nice that both tools allow students to take their earnings and “spend them” on different features embedded within the virtual society.  I also like the option to play against other people who are online gaming at the same time.

At this point I’m not sure how I would incorporate brainnook or minyanland into my lesson-plans, for high school students, but I can see how these would be fun websites to visit if students have extra time at the end of class or if there is time to fill before a long break, such as spring break, to keep student’s brains working.   These two websites are also great tools for students to access over spring, winter, and summer break to keep their minds engaged in academics while still having a bit of fun.

The application/tool Edusim (found at http://www.edusim3d.com/) is an amazing creation!  I thought this would be a wonderful tool to use with high school students, where the possibilities are endless and there is so much fun to be had!  This would be something to get students up and out of their seats to explore the world around them and receive information on different objects without even asking questions.  I think it would be fun to use this tool to work on research papers, not only to find materials such as books but also to pull information from tangible objects.  Students in the D.C. Metro area could take this tool into the city and pull all kinds of great information on the different monuments to use in a paper.  In a way this type of tool could make students more willing to explore physical locations with this tool to gather information.

What I found most interesting in the presentation of this tool was the “joke” the woman (Pattie Maes) threw out at the end saying they could eventually work toward a brain implant of this technology.  I laughed a little to myself because for years I have joked with some of my friends that if they could implant their phones into their heads they would, this tool brings us closer to that reality and probably will evolve into some sort of brain implant.  Very cool idea overall though!

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Category: indt501
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  1. bwebber says:

    I agree with your take on virtual worlds, but I am also just a little leery of how far they can take a person! Have you ever read the book, Feed by M.T. Anderson? It’s about a future society where everyone has brain implants!

  2. Kayla Patterson says:

    I am glad that you loved the Eduism. I found them to be a good reference site for information but didn’t love the 3D stuff that much this week. I love your enthusiasm! Have a great time with your kiddos!