Augmented Reality in Education

StarWalk

My only real experience with augmented reality (AR) is with StarWalk on the iOS devices. I been using StarWalk off and on for about 2 years. It started out when I was teaching an astronomy unit for 7th grade science. In a word, the StarWalk app is awesome! It’s simple to use and brings astronomy to a level where anyone can appreciate and understand. Even my 5 year old loves using the app on nights we go out to star gaze. For my 7th graders, I used it in the classroom to show the different constellation and how the location of stars change depending on season, etc. Some ended up downloading it and using it on their own. That in itself shows how well this AR app works in the education setting.

Now, 2 years later, there has been more development in this new field. Just from my quick look at YouTube to create a playlist for this week’s assignment, I found that several companies have created AR apps to teach chemical bonding in Chemistry. Genius! When I was teaching Chemistry, it’s one of the harder topics to teach since it requires students to imagine the electrons moving around in the atom. Students often wonder, “how do electrons get shared?” or “why would sharing be better?”. With these AR apps, students can see how compounds are formed by putting 2 element cards together. Here’s a YouTube showing how one particular AR software works:

Here’s a YouTube video using AR tags on the iPhone:

Hopefully, these types of AR apps will be affordable enough so that all students / teachers will have access to the material.

2 thoughts on “Augmented Reality in Education

  1. Hi Nan,
    Seems like you are already using AR in your class and many more AR coming in the field of science to help students learn. I like the video you posted. What I am most interested in how to create complex AR like in the video. Aurasma app can help you create simple AR overlaying a picture, or video over an object, but I have not figured out how to do more complex overlay like in your video. AR is great for 3-D visualization. Learned a lot from your post!

  2. Thanks, Marie. I’m hoping to find more AR apps to use in my classes. We use a lot of apps for Anatomy, but they are not really AR. Next year, I’ll be teaching Chemistry so I’m going to to look in to the availability of these AR apps shown in the YouTubes.

    On another notes, I found this great review of various AR apps for astronomy (in addition to StarWalk). http://ipadapps4school.com/2013/03/04/3-ipad-apps-students-can-use-to-explore-stars-and-planets/

    Nan

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