PRIMARY school kids have started getting a big kick with Virtual Reality (VR) becoming part of their daily study.
This pilot project on the ‘Use of Virtual Reality (VR) in Social Studies Education’ is in line with initiatives to step up Singapore’s push towards becoming a digitally-ready society.
They now have access to technology and this will develop their confidence to use it and enhance the way they live, play and learn.
The objective of the pilot project is to trial the feasibility of using VR technology as a tool in the teaching and learning of Social Studies in Singapore schools. Through the VR experiences students, with headsets, are able to participate in multiple virtual learning experiences of different locations around Singapore.
Since March 2017, five primary schools piloted the use of VR: Beacon Primary School, CHIJ – Our Lady of Good Counsel, Fuhua Primary School, Montfort Junior School and West Spring Primary School.
Here’s what two VR teachers and two Primary Four students of West Spring Primary School say of their use of VR (Virtual Reality):
VR teacher Parameshwari Selvarajah, West Spring Primary School:
“I find VR (Virtual Reality) a very useful and effective tool to reach out to the students. For example, through the use of VR technology, they experience visiting a faraway farm as they would on-site.
“They watch it from a 360 degree angle as we guide them through the VR experience. We also use supplementary instructional photographs, videos or information in addition to the immersive environment to reinforce key learning points.”
VR teacher Kwek Yao Chie, West Spring Primary School:
“VR technology definitely enhances the learning experience in classrooms. The teacher becomes the active facilitator, motivating and challenging them, a vast difference compared to tradition teaching.
“The students immediately capture what they learn through the headsets as VR offers a special medium to simulate the experience of being in a location, be it a farm or a museum, thus instantly engaging the students’ attention.”
Nur Haizah, Primary Four, West Spring Primary School:
“Wow, when I put on the headsets, I feel as though I’m transformed to a different world. The farm-clip, for example, allows me to see many animals and how they live every day. I believe VR (Virtual Reality) is just magic.
“Sometimes it is easier to see and hear something than have it explained to you, and occasionally we just need to be taken out of a classroom environment and dropped into a new world, where you can even watch horses and cows go about their daily lives, or even experience a performance at a theatre or in a concert hall.”
Siddhartha Srinivasan, Primary Four, West Spring Primary School:
“I enjoyed the clip on early settlers in Singapore and how their contributions are reflected through the design and architecture of many buildings. It makes my learning of my favourite subject, history, very enjoyable as I get the chance to explore the olden days.
“It’s very nice in making me challenge to learn more about the outdoor realities. VR (Virtual Reality) will very soon be the best way to give students access to technology and to develop the confidence to use it.”