zSpace Virtual Reality Station

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Day 6 is Club day at Durham Academy Middle School. Mr. Schaefer, Mrs. Schwartz, Mrs. Williams, and Mrs. Donnelly offer a Coding Club where students learn how to use code, write code, and create interactive experiences.

Yesterday, Stephen Allison from zSpace gave us the opportunity to play and learn using a virtual reality station. We got to take apart a motor, hold a virtual butterfly, and see inside a heart.

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“The zSpace System comes with a high definition stereoscopic display. It rendering full resolution images for your eyes and tracking your head movements to create a smooth parallax experience.”  http://zspace.com​
I was curious about parallax. Just in case you are too, here is what Wikipedia reveals: Parallax is a displacement or difference in the apparent position of an object viewed along two different lines of sight, and is measured by the angle or semi-angle of inclination between those two lines.
Students put on the glasses, picked up the stylus, and with minimal guidance from Mr. Allison were able to manipulate the tools with ease. I even got in on the game. We took layers off, labeled parts, and felt the heart beat through the stylus. We could reach out and “touch” the things we were viewing. Of course I inquired about Language Arts applications, and they are in the works. Can you imagine a 3D reading experience?
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To get an idea of what it can do, watch this video: http://edu.zspace.com/resources/how-to-franklins-lab
To learn more go to http://zspace.com​