This site has been created as a product of the learning and interests sparked by participation in a course at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE): CTL 5011 - Holistic Approaches to Information Technology.
About Me and My Thought Process behind this Site
I am a Grade 7 homeroom teacher in Ontario who is also responsible for teaching art. Admittedly, teaching art sometimes frightens me. I wouldn't describe myself as an artist, I do not have a fine art background, and I think the last time I sat in an art class for any prolonged period of time was back when I was in Grade 8. So, clearly, I have very limited expertise. In fact, I often learn some of my best fine art techniques from my students! What I do have, though, is a passion for art, especially with how art can be used alongside technology and how technology can be used in novel ways for individuals to express themselves. I try to leverage this passion to compensate for my lack of education in art. I do this by considering ways of introducing art concepts within the digital contexts we live in. While my first couple years of teaching art was characterized by low confidence in planning and facilitating meaningful lessons, I was able to grow in confidence by looking to digital tools and environments for teaching art. While I lack fine art skills, what I realized I can offer students is introducing them to digital environments to further their own interests and passion for art.
This past year, my classes explored photo editing software by using an online program called PIXLR. Seeing the students co-construct their knowledge around this program and engage each other around the principles of design is what has continued to inspire me to seek other digital tools and environments for my future instruction. So, I figured I'd look for some tools and share them with other educators here.
With this in mind, the purpose of this site is to explore how virtual worlds (VW) and virtual reality (VR) can be used for art education. In addition to my enthusiasm for art, I also enjoy video games. So this seemed like an ideal platform to explore.
See below for the guiding questions for this site's creation as well as a description of what you will find on here.