Educators seek crowd funding for OpenSim project

The Association of Virtual World Educators is looking for $54,750 to develop a package of virtual environments designed to teach lessons in science and social studies.

The group has created a Kickstarter page and a video to promote the project, which has a funding deadline of December 31.

The educational materials will be free for schools to use, and will include lesson plans, teachers guides, worksheets, and a self-contained virtual world.

A virtual oil spill in the NOBLE virtual world. (Image courtesy Forsyth County School District.)

The project, called NOBLE Adventures, is spearheaded by Steve Mashburn, who is also behind the NOBLE Virtual World used by teachers and students in Georgia’s Forsyth County School District.

“We have long passed the proof of concept stage,” he wrote. “We know this stuff works.”

The money will go towards paying for a virtual world developer, a curriculum specialist, and a creative director, as well as shipping, rewards, and other expenses.

The project will use open source and Creative Commons tools and content whenever possible, Mashburn said in the proposal.

This includes the use of OpenSim as the virtual world platform.

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Maria Korolov

Maria Korolov is editor and publisher of Hypergrid Business. She has been a journalist for more than twenty years and has worked for the Chicago Tribune, Reuters, and Computerworld and has reported from over a dozen countries, including Russia and China.