Studium Drive fifth graders demonstrate virtual reality projects to LOCS Board of Education during March 13 meeting

By Megan Kelley

Review Writer

Lake Orion’s Board of Education was visited by fifth graders from Stadium Drive Elementary during their March 13 meeting.

Stadium Drive Media Specialist Dan Dabrowski and several fifth grade students came to share and demonstrate their recently completed Virtual Reality (VR) projects with the board.

The fifth graders were tasked with creating presentations about several different time periods — World War I, World War II, the Vietnam War, the Civil Rights Movement, the Civil War and Woman’s Sufferage — with the option of doing this through CoSpaces VR, Sway, PowerPoint and handmade books.

“The opportunity for choice, which we love, truly heightens student engagement and motivation,” said Assistant Superintendent of Teaching and Learning Heidi Mercer.

Last summer, Dabrowski was introduced to CoSpaces and decided to take a chance with it and incorporate it into the classroom.

Students worked in pairs or small groups to not only expand their technology knowledge but also their history knowledge.

Several students also said that working together on this project helped broaden their communication and discussion skills.

Students took turns explaining different parts of CoSpaces VR to the board.

“It’s not difficult to code. You just drag and drop the command you want and you can even type in what you want your characters to say,” said Ava, a student at Stadium Drive.

Cole, another fifth grade student, presented the board with another new feature CoSpaces offers — something that is known as a “Merge Cube.”

“Unlike CoSpaces, where you experience it in virtual reality, with Merge Cube it’s augmented reality. So you can take any of your mobile devices with the CoSpaces app and you can view this through the mobile device,” he said. “In the past year, we’ve been working on this new addition, with the Merge Cube, and it has been really just fantastic with these and a great addition to our classroom.”

Isabella and Maria used CoSpaces virtual reality to create an adventure quest-type VR on Woman’s Sufferage and presented that to the board.

The fifth graders passed out VR goggles and allowed the members to spend a few minutes playing around in the world the two girls had created.

The VR goggles were purchased with grant money that had been received by Lake Orion’s Technology Integration Specialist Mr. Scone and Science Specialist Jamie Kimber.