Story by Griffin Hadley
“Alright, goggles up,” Mr. Evan Williams, journalism adviser, said.
And all you could hear a roar of excitement because everyone in the room was stunned over the virtual reality that they were in.
On Wednesday, January 27, Google brought the Google Cardboard and the View-Master devices to Clay to beta test a new educational environment.
Google has made a new app called Google Expeditions, and it’s still in beta phase. Only selected schools around the country got to experience it, and Clay was selected!
According to Google, Expeditions are collections of virtual reality panoramas, 360° photo spheres, 3D images and video, and ambient sounds—annotated with details, points of interest, and questions that make them easy to integrate.
The devices were set up in the seventh grade Social Studies classrooms and the phones had to be charged between every virtual field trip session.
Seventh-grade students at Clay got to experience this virtual reality.
Andrew Buck, seventh grade, said that his favorite part of this virtual reality field trip was when he went to the moon. “[We got to] go to the Taj Mahal and visualize what we are actually learning about in social studies,” he said.
“It works by putting a phone into a cardboard headset,” Buck said. “The lenses make the picture a 360 degree, virtual reality picture.”
Mia Anderson, seventh grade, said the device hurt her eyes and nose a little bit, but it didn't ruin the experience.
Another seventh grader, Corbin King, said his first reaction when he brought the goggles to his face was surprise. King also said he would recommend this device for learning in classrooms.
Daniele Wittles not only got to go on a virtual reality field trip in Social Studies, but she got to do it again in her elective class. Wittles said that her elective teacher, Mr. Williams, showed the class what a photographer’s job was in the American Museum of Natural History.
We thank Google for selecting Clay out of hundreds of schools around the country to experience this beta test app.
All stories, photos and video footage by the seventh and eighth grade newspaper students.