Oh my goodness, it has actually started! Today was session 1: Nic rusehd up to Ipswich last night and was in the classroom with Tommy whilst I joined the class remotely through Open Sim (as Gwendoline) and a Skype connection.  The first session is designed to introduce the project and the Crystal Palace as well as induct students to the virtual world technology. Students were paired and randomly assigned their avatar. Session activities included an induction activity, presentation from Tommy, walk down a time physical timeline to 1854 and a Q and A session in which students could ask Gwendoline questions about the Palace and I could answer via Skype.

I think it worked ok – it sounded slightly mayhem and it was weird to be hearing all the chaos of the classroom while I was sitting by myself in my office. The Q and A session with Gwen went particularly well – the students appeared to suspend their disbelief to engage with Gwendoline as a Victorian lady and enthusiastically asked an impressive range of questions (and I had a real job to think quick enough on my feet not to answer questions with hindsight) .  There were a few technological problems though – system performance unexpectedly dropped dramatically after just 5 or 6 (out of 15) avatars logged in so Nic could only let half the class log in at any one time. Overall, though, the session was delivered more or less as planned and seemed to go well. Students learned the controls quickly and were easily able to follow and master Nic’s induction activities. Pretty good start I think!


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