Entrepreneur Education Platform GeniusU Raises $1.5M Seed Funding at $250M Valuation — from edtechreview.in ed by Stephen Soulunii

Excerpt (emphasis DSC):

Genius Group has recently announced that its EdTech arm, GeniusU Ltd, has raised $1.5 million in a seed round to support the development of its Genius Metaversity virtual learning plans.

With the fresh funding, GeniusU plans to extend its courses and programs to interactive learning environments in the metaverse, with students and faculty connecting and learning in global classrooms and virtual 3D environments. It also plans to integrate each student’s AI-based virtual assistant ‘Genie’ into the metaverse as 3D virtual assistants that accompany each student on their personalized journey and integrate its GEMs (Genius Education Merits) student credits into the metaverse. GEMs are earned by students as they learn and can be spent on products and services within GeniusU and counting towards their certifications.

 

Best Free Virtual Escape Rooms for Schools — from techlearning.com by Diana Restifo
Virtual escape rooms incorporate riddles, puzzles, math, logic, and literacy skills to create an exciting adventure in education.

Excerpt:

Virtual escape rooms are a form of gamified learning that incorporates riddles, puzzles, math, logic, and literacy skills to create an exciting adventure in education. Students demonstrate their skills and knowledge in order to unlock each level, eventually earning their liberation. Some escape rooms are one-page affairs, while others weave an intricate backstory to enthrall players. Many also offer hints when an incorrect answer is given, thereby encouraging kids to persevere until success is achieved.

There’s no charge for any of these virtual escape rooms, so feel free to free yourself, for free!

Also relevant/see:

Storybird Lesson Plan — from techlearning.com by Stephanie Smith Budhai, Ph.D.
This Storybird Lesson Plan is designed to help educators utilize a digital learning platform to support teaching and learning

Excerpt:

Storybird is an attractive and easy-to-use reading and writing online edtech tool with beautiful images to inspire students as they develop their literacy skills. Storybird goes beyond reading online books, and provides an accessible platform for learners of all ages to engage in a wide variety of reading and writing genres including descriptive, creative, and persuasive writing as well as longform stories, flash fiction, poetry, and comics.

For an overview of Storybird, check out What is Storybird for Education? Best Tips and Tricks. This sample lesson plan is geared toward fiction storytelling writing instruction for elementary students.

 

Why gamified learning works so well for gifted children — from raisinglifelonglearners.com by Colleen Kessler

Excerpt:

The gamification of learning can be critical for gifted children in particular, who often struggle to stay focused, engaged, and challenged in a traditional educational environment. Gamification can be so effective in gifted education because the learner forgets they are “working” and instead feels they are “playing.” It allows the gifted brain to relax into the “flow” of learning, and more effectively use their intellect for problem solving and creativity.

Also see:

Synthesis dot com


Addendum on 4/27/22:

Homeschooling our gifted children: The power of artful questions — from raisinglifelonglearners.com by Colleen Kessler

Examples of artful questions for learning:

  • Why do you think that might have happened?
  • What would you have done differently?
  • What did you notice about that?
  • What would you suggest we do instead?
  • That’s a good point. How can you reconcile these two things?
  • Do you have an idea for how we could make this better?

From DSC:
Perhaps we should post those types of questions up on the walls of many board rooms and conference rooms around the nation…or have it be a slide in a presentation…or…

 

Fun Math Games For Kids To Play At Home — from edtechreview.in by Saniya Khan

Excerpt:

Games in math learning can encourage students to explore these concepts, from number concepts, such as counting sequence, one-to-one correspondence, and computation strategies to number combinations, patterns, place value and other essential math concepts. They also offer students the opportunity to deepen their understanding of mathematics and reasoning. The teacher should provide repeated opportunities for students to play games and then allow mathematical ideas to emerge as students notice new models, relationships and strategies.

 

Play-based learning in your homeschool: It’s more than just board games — from raisinglifelonglearners.com by Colleen Kessler

Excerpts:

Play-based learning doesn’t have to fit in a box!  There are many wonderful resources in the homeschool community to help you discover what works best for your family.

In addition to the various suggestions I have included in today’s episode of the podcast, you’ll find excellent recommendations from these sites, dedicated to creating out of the box approaches to learning:

In a nutshell, this means that kids learn best when they’re mentally active, engaged socially, and when they can make connections to their lives.

Also relevant/see:

Financial literacy games provide fun ways for students of all ages to learn about finances on various topics. Some websites have grade bands with interactive ways for students to explore creating a bank account, setting a budget, applying for a loan, and many others. Many of the options available include financial literacy games for the classroom.

From DSC:
Although the following resource isn’t about learning, it reminds me of the topic of “play”:

 
 

Tapping the Potential of Learning Through Play in STEAM Programs — from techlearning.com by Ray Bendici
Encouraging purposeful play through tools such as LEGO Education to engage students and improve STEAM learning outcomes

Excerpt:

We know children thrive through play, but did you know that learning through play is a powerful research-backed strategy to boost student engagement in the classroom?

“When students are playing, they’re unlocking their natural curiosity and finding their joy in learning,” said Dr. Jenny Nash, Head of Education Impact, US, for LEGO Education, during a recent virtual Tech & Learning roundtable discussion. “And when students learn in a purposeful, hands-on way it builds their confidence, and lessons can really become more motivating and meaningful. Purposeful play is rooted in pedagogical approaches, such as project-based learning, and it’s really known to increase student learning outcomes.”

 

The Metaverse Will Radically Change Content Creation Forever — from forbes.com by Falon Fatemi

Excerpt:

Although the metaverse promises to touch nearly every person in our society, there’s one demographic that will almost certainly see disproportionately strong disruption: creators. The metaverse has the potential to fundamentally disrupt the content creation process.

The metaverse is slated to help creators make more interactive and immersive content, thanks in large part to advances in VR and AR. The stakes will be raised as creators will be expected to build more immersive and interactive content than ever before.

Also related/see:

The Amazing Possibilities Of Healthcare In The Metaverse — from forbes.com by Bernard Marr

Excerpts:

What’s generally agreed on, however, is that it’s effectively the next version of the internet – one that will take advantage of artificial intelligence (AI), augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), and ever-increasing connectivity (for example, 5G networks) to create online environments that are more immersive, experiential and interactive than what we have today.

Metaverse involves the convergence of three major technological trends, which all have the potential to impact healthcare individually. Together, though, they could create entirely new channels for delivering care that have the potential to lower costs and vastly improve patient outcomes. These are telepresence (allowing people to be together virtually, even while we’re apart physically), digital twinning, and blockchain (and its ability to let us create a distributed internet).

From DSC:
That last paragraph could likely apply to our future learning ecosystems as well. Lower costs. A greater sense of presence. Getting paid for one’s teaching…then going to learn something new and paying someone else for that new training/education.

 

You Sleuth = The game of Clue + Augmented Reality (AR)

You Sleuth is a family-friendly outdoor game that requires a moderate amount of walking. You can play by yourself or with a group of friends or family. If you are looking for something new that will stimulate your mind while sneaking in a little exercise and fresh air then register today. Read the rest of the FAQ for more details about how You Sleuth works.


From DSC:
What might this look/work like for learning-related applications? Also, if you are studying to be an actor or actress, might there be some new opportunities for you here!? If you are a writer, might there be some new sorts of collaborations opening up here? As the next version of the internet is developed, what new affordances/opportunities might exist in this area?


 

The Perceptus Platform / app began to identify individual bricks, counting and cataloging them by shape and color, and then suggesting different animals he could build with those specific bricks.

AR object recognition can give you superpowers — from by Janko Roettgers and Nick Statt

Excerpt:

Making sense of AR, one Lego brick at a time
Singulos Research CEO and CTO Brad Quinton poured a bunch of Lego bricks onto his desk during a recent Zoom call. Then, he picked up an iPad, fired up a demo app and opened the app’s camera mode. Immediately, the app began to identify individual bricks, counting and cataloging them by shape and color, and then suggesting different animals he could build with those specific bricks.

The playful and fun demo was meant to show off the capabilities of the Perceptus Platform, an AR object-recognition technology Singulos has been building in stealth over the past three years. The platform could soon help developers build smarter AR apps and services. “It gives AR applications the visual context of what’s around them,” Quinton said, and that could be key to building AR glasses people will actually want to wear.

From DSC:
This is a great use of Augmented Reality (AR)! Very slick! It’s beneficial, practical, and likely an example of what is to come.

 

A whole new world: Education meets the metaverse — from brookings.edu by Kathy Hirsh-Pasek, Jennifer M. Zosh, Helen Shwe Hadani, Roberta Michnick Golinkoff, Kevin Clark, Chip Donohue, and Ellen Wartella

Excerpt:

The metaverse is upon us. Soon it will be as omnipresent as TikTok, Instagram, and Facebook (now Meta). As technology advances to bring us new immersive and imaginary worlds, how we educate children and prepare teachers must also advance to meet these new opportunities. When education lags the digital leaps, the technology rather than educators defines what counts as educational opportunity. This is largely what happened with the introduction of “educational” apps designed to be used on smartphones and tablets meant for adults. Today, as the metaverse infrastructure is still under construction, researchers, educators, policymakers, and digital designers have a chance to lead the way rather than get caught in the undertow. To leverage the potential of the metaverse as a 3D, global, interconnected, immersive, and real-time online space, we need new ways to connect the physical world with augmented and virtual reality (VR) experiences.

In the end, we challenge those creating educational products for the metaverse to partner with educators and scientists to ensure that children experience real human social interaction as they navigate virtual spaces, children’s agency is supported as they explore these spaces, and there is a real eye to diversity in the representation and access to what is created.  

Also relevant/see:

The metaverse can provide a whole new opportunity for education. Here’s what to consider — from fastcompany.com by Stephen Fromkin
The cofounder of Talespin looks at an existing immersive learning program that delivers results and says our next priority should be getting it into the hands of as many learners as possible through the metaverse.

 

How I use Minecraft to help kids with autism — from ted.com by Stuart Duncan; with thanks to Dr. Kate Christian for this resource

Description:

The internet can be an ugly place, but you won’t find bullies or trolls on Stuart Duncan’s Minecraft server, AutCraft. Designed for children with autism and their families, AutCraft creates a safe online environment for play and self-expression for kids who sometimes behave a bit differently than their peers (and who might be singled out elsewhere). Learn more about one of the best places on the internet with this heartwarming talk.

 

Below are two excerpted snapshots from Stuart’s presentation:

Stuart Duncan speaking at TEDX York U

These are the words autistic students used to describe their experience with Stuart's Minecraft server

 

Addendum on 1/17/22:

  • Fortnite Is Back On Apple iOS, for Some Users — from threstreet.com by Tony Owusu
    Beta testers for Fortnite on streaming cloud gaming service GeForce Now will have access to the third-person shooter through Apple’s Safari web browser.
 

The Samsung Freestyle Projector

Samsung just made the TV disappear — from protocol.com by Janko Roettgers
Samsung’s Freestyle projector is a smart TV. And not a TV at all. And a smart speaker. And … a lamp?

Excerpt:

Samsung’s TV R&D team seemingly never runs out of ideas: After giving the world a TV the size of a wall, a TV that looked like a giant phone and a TV that doubles as art, at this year’s CES, the company debuted a TV that’s capable of turning anything and everything into a screen.

The new Samsung Freestyle is a portable projector capable of projecting video from 30 inches to 100 inches. It offers access to the very same UI and apps as any of the company’s other 2022 smart TVs, but that’s pretty much where the similarities to a traditional TV end.

 

This is a Screen — And It Could be the Biggest Product Launch at CES 2022 — from interestingengineering.com by Grant Currin
Samsung is letting users re-imagine what their spaces can be.

Excerpt:

The new hyperflexible, hyperportable, hypercustomizable, hyperpersonalizable projector is all about what it can be for the individual user. Unconstrained by cables or presets, the Freestyle is marketed as an anything-you-want-it-to-be machine. Samsung says it will ship in the next few months.

 

Samsung Electronics Launches The Freestyle, a Portable Screen for Entertainment Wherever You Are — from news.samsung.com

  • First-of-its-kind technology delivers optimal viewing and entertainment in a compact form factor
  • Features auto-level, auto-focus and auto-keystone capabilities for perfect picture every time

The Samsung Freestyle Projector

 

 

Nvidia expands its GeForce Now game streaming ecosystem — from techcrunch.com by Frederic Lardinois

Excerpt:

At CES, Nvidia today put a strong emphasis on its GeForce Now game streaming service, its competitor to the likes of Google’s Stadia (that’s still around, right?), Amazon’s Luna and Microsoft’s increasingly popular Xbox Cloud Gaming service. All of these use a different business model, with GeForce Now making it easy for players to bring games they bought elsewhere to the service, with Nvidia offering a restricted free tier and then charging a membership fee for access to its servers, starting…

Nvidia launches the $249 GeForce RTX 3050 — from techcrunch.com by Frederic Lardinois

Excerpt:

You can now add another set of Nvidia-based graphics cards to the graphics cards you probably won’t be able to buy anytime soon, as the company today launched the GeForce RTX 3050 for desktops. Starting at $249, the budget-friendly card — assuming Nvidia and its partners can produce enough to keep prices from escalating — will feature 8GB of GDDR6 memory and promises to be able to run the latest games at over 60 frames in a 1440p resolution with ray-tracing enabled. Like its more powerful …

Nvidia expands its Omniverse — from techcrunch.com by Frederic Lardinois

Excerpt:

Omniverse is Nvidia’s platform for allowing creators, designers and engineers to collaboratively build virtual worlds. Until now, Omniverse and the various Nvidia tools that support it were in beta, but at CES today, the company took off the beta label and made Omniverse generally available to creators. The company says Omniverse has already been downloaded by almost 100,000 creators and with today’s update, it is bringing a number of new features to the platform, too.

Nvidia embraces the metaverse with new software, marketplace deals — from reuters.com by Stephen Nellis

Excerpt:

Jan 3 (Reuters) – Nvidia Corp (NVDA.O) on Tuesday said that it would give away software for free to artists and other creators building virtual worlds for the metaverse and that it has made technology deals with several marketplaces where artists sell the three-dimensional content they create.

 
© 2022 | Daniel Christian