January 16, 2011

Tethered 3D Learning

In an early entry in this blog, I introduced the 3D content taxonomy represented in the chart below:

In this post, I originally groused (in reference to 3D movie or movie segments): "There's not much educational value there, except the 'grab' factor. Don't stay fixated here too long." Well, live and learn. I was a bit wrong. At the ISTE 2010 national technology conference in Denver, I spoke with Dr. KJ Brar, who is the president of Designmate (www.designmate.com), perhaps the largest producer of 3D content in the world. After some thoughtful conversations with Dr. Brar, I learned something quite important. Although movie segments are indeed more passive learning experiences than their other cousins on the 3D content taxonomy, they can still play a very important role in 3D learning. When tightly tethered to interactive simulations, 3D movie segments can provide the sound base of knowledge and context that students need in order to fully explore a simulation and firmly understand the concepts being presented. Although 3D movie segments have less value when they stand alone in instruction, in tandem with interactive simulations, movie segments have real value. Now, six months after I spoke with Dr. Brar, his words have borne out in our classrooms. Short video segments are indeed highly effective.

1 comment:

  1. It's always a challenge to be mindful of and responsive to taxonomy when incorporating technology into the classroom. We run the risk of losing student engagement if we rely too heavily on just one taxonomic level, especially passive content. The idea of tethering is a good one. Just as too many empty calories dilute our senses and compromise our nutritional health, too many passive technology experiences will dull and weaken the educational well-being of our students.

    One of the many outstanding resources I gleaned from following ISTE 2010 online was Bloom's Digital Taxonomy (http://edorigami.wikispaces.com/Bloom%27s+Digital+Taxonomy). I particularly like the PDF Quick Sheets for each of the taxonomic levels. These will be very useful in helping to guide my technology instruction, and I look forward to sharing them with colleagues.