So excited to see how quickly our A&S100 students in the A&S Wired Living Learning Community take to the Second Life interface now. This short course, “Between Shadow and Light” for first-year students has always been fun, but with the new, more user-friendly way for creating an account – much of the headache in orientation for students has simply gone away.
I handed out a flyer about SL with some web resources (download .pdf here) that I thought would be helpful for orienting students. I also showed this Prezi (click on the image to see the presentation) on one screen while demonstrating how Bella Yan gets around inworld on another screen. Within a few moments after my presentation, several students had already created their accounts and found their way to the UKSL Perennial Peace Garden on their own. Soon Bella was surrounded by newbies bumping into each other and running around — only 30 minutes into the classtime! I wish I had taken a picture…
We’ll be conducting class in the computer lab in M.I.King Science Library next week so they can play Beth Kraemer’s Second Life Scavenger Hunt (here’s a Word doc to download) and learn how to avoid newbie mistakes at their assigned sims. Only two sessions in the lab are planned for this semester to assure quality of the inworld experience as we explore the various inworld non-Western settings. This year, we’re matching up our students’ SL explorations with the home countries of our international student partners. They’ll be building multimedia projects together and we’re using international sites in Second Life as a way for our students to explore and practice how they will interact with their UK colleagues from those cultural backgrounds. You are welcome to follow their journaling (http://ukshadowlight.wordpress.com/) and comment on their posts as they explore Second Life and think about the ethics and behaviors of how they interact with strangers.
I know this semester’s class will be fun and I will learn so much from them – as I always do.