OpenSimulator: School Quick Start Guide

On June 19, 2011, in Collaborate, Software, Tools, by DavidDeeds

OpenSimulator: School Quick Start GuideThey said it couldn’t get done…they said it wouldn’t get done…it [darn] near didn’t get done! Yet here it is, the “OpenSimulator: School Quick Start Guide,” a “one stop shop” for teachers wanting to get their schools started with 3D virtual worlds. It includes an overview, step-by-step setup directions and even sample lesson plans for OpenSimulator (aka OpenSim). Covers Second Life too!

For a couple of years now, I’ve been talking with a wide range of people…the geeks at ReactionGrid…fellow instructors at international and other schools…colleagues met via conferences and meetings, in Real and Second Life…about what’s holding 3D virtual worlds back in education. The consensus was that OpenSimulator, still not quite at Version 1.0 stage, is still too difficult for teachers to work with…some kind of tutorial was needed. Earlier this year, this e-book started off as an online course but that deal fell through…I was distraught for about 15 minutes…until I realized that with some (substantial!) rewriting, we would finally have the guide that’s been needed. Changchun American International School Directors Daniel and Irene Chou, along with Principal Mary Pazsit, agreed that our organization would generously give the e-book free to schools around the world. And so here we are.

Co-teacher Alex Makosz and I will make the big announcement re: the e-book at the upcoming AACE ED-MEDIA Conference in Lisbon. The title of our paper is: “Using 3D Virtual Worlds — OpenSimulator, Quest Atlantis — To Teach International School Students,” the PPTX for which you can get via SlideShare now, or wait until we’ve embedded the slides in this and other blogs. We’ll be directing people to get the e-book from Changchun American International School’s nifty new website, which isn’t ready yet, so wait a week to peek!

You can get your copy from Scribd. If you live in China, Scrib is blocked by The Great Firewall, so you can get it from Join Us in 3D Education!, Alex’s site, or from InDeeds, my blog. Alex has all kinds of interesting resources listed on his site.

Be sure to get the free ReactionGrid .OAR, generously donated by Kyle/Robin Gomboy and Chris Hart.

If you post the .PDF on your website, blog, wiki or ning, we ask that you include the Creative Commons license text in your HTML.

Help us spread the word! Tell teachers, administrators…everybody you think would be interested…about this e-book. Maybe the easiest way to do this would be to share the link to Maria Korolov’s Hypergrid Business ezine story. Be sure to tweet, share on Facebook, etc. Thanks!