I have ranted before and I may rant a little more about virtual realities.
Yes, they have there place. I was excited when I clicked on a suggested link to see the tank training information. That’s what my husband does and they battle in armored vehicles using these virtual worlds. This helps them plan, understand, and critique movements to better help them in battle. It has it’s place. Simulation tools are utilized but, hands on practice is imperative too. Sometimes the computer generated enables new learners to experience, understand, and be able to operate competently before engaging in reality.
I know this is the same for schools – a little of virtual reality a little hands on real world work – but, it brings me to my rant… Which I haven’t researched with empirical theory (which I probably should) it is just my opinion based on experience and previous light reading and Dr googling.
My quick opinion on virtual realities for children under say 6/7 years of age… Good and Bad:
Good: Offers more information, can explore parallels they couldn’t, experience first hand experiences they could only previously read or imagine about, see what they are told and explore what they’ve been read about and visually connect the learnings. Make deeper cognitive connections therefore, building concept knowledge and understanding faster/ more thoroughly/ embedded deeper/ remember-able?.
Bad: A child learning about their own reality is given another to try and comprehend. the confusion of realities and the virtual come down where they are unable to come back to reality without a break down or withdrawal of emotions as there little minds process information and try to regulate again. Introducing addictive materials and introducing them at impressionable times in development/ life. Normalizing something that may not be normal (Empirical research insert here).
My view is purely emotional and behavioral focused. These virtual realities while seemingly wonderful may not be. They’re new to use I would assume longitude studies would not have been conducted.
Probably a pointless view but, I just worry for young children that are exposed to these worlds and they can’t handle them but, they form part of an assessment… This would have to be a barrier or cause for differentiated teaching and materials surely ?!?!