Although virtual worlds offer teachers the potential to enhance the K-12 curriculum in novel ways, there have been few systematic attempts to instruct teachers about virtual worlds, research their reactions, or track their explorations of these three-dimensional environments. Therefore, this study was designed to respond to the call to help teachers to master digital skills, increase their self-confidence with digital media, and promote educators' use of new technologies in their personal and professional lives. To accomplish this, the first author offered a course based in the virtual world of Second Life (SL) in which the second author participated as a student and a coresearcher. The purpose of this study was to describe teachers' responses to a virtual world for teaching and learning. This study was conducted on the basis of the methodology of teacher research using methods of virtual ethnography. Participants demonstrated high degrees of ability with the digital skills of SL, articulated educational uses for virtual worlds, and identified obstacles to implementation and ways to address those obstacles. This study offers support and a model for others in constructing similar courses for teacher education.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Computer Science Applications