Virtual Worlds Best Practices in Education Convention!


Wiki Tree - vwbpeThis will be an opportunity to hear from educators around the world who
are actively using virtual worlds and immersive technology in their
The schedule includes SLURLs (inworld locations) and teleport links to
the various locations. You need a Secondlife account to attend
(accounts are free).  Most people find that they need at least an hour
to acclimate to the virtual world and figure out how to move. New users
are always welcome at Educational events. There will be mentors on hand
to answer questions and assist users.

Schedule and more info:

In photo: WikiTree demo.
Studio Wikitecture: Opening Architecture


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New Media in the Arts Classroom, a few ideas

Use technologies the students have already embraced.

Have students take a photo series with their camera phones (or work in teams). Create a narrative, explore texture. Blow images up and consider the grain and distortions.

Crop in on small details of well known art and blow them up. Can the students guess the artist? Discuss the texture, brushwork, use of color, abstraction of form.

Collect found objects and incorporate them into a collage. Combine physical and virtual collage. Use a camera or scanner to get resource images into the computer.

Shared art. Create a progression by passing around digital artwork that is added to by each student. Each student begins a work, then passes it on. This can be done using an online gallery (or school server) to share the art. How does this collaboration change ideas about autonomy in art? Since each iteration is preserved, what is the original? What is lost?

Create a portfolio. Using software, shareware, scanners and/or simple HTML, have students select and arrange their best work. Discuss digital portfolios vs physical portfolios, slides vs CD and web portfolios.

Use free online services (or simple software) to create a slideshow of students’ work.

Research. Have each student pick an artist to research online. Gather images (discuss copyright and fair-use) and information about the artist and present via simple HTML or slideshow.

Use screenshots to document a search. Discuss the different ways information can be presented and how the search evolved; the false leads, interesting side journeys. Discuss the advantages and pitfalls of online research.

Use free online art-making tools to make some original art.

Explore algorithmic “code art.” Visit online presentations and explore interactive art. Save some original creations. How does such art change perceptions of authorship, originality? Where is the “art?” Is it in the programming, the code? The presentation? The interaction between spectator and artist?

Graphic Design. Explore typography. Have each student pick a letter of the alphabet and create an original poster celebrating that letter.

Use combinations of copier art and digital manipulation to explore and abstract an object.

Compare digital and film photography. Shoot the same object with digital and 35mm cameras. Develop a print from each. Is the “real” photograph richer? How are the processes similar and different? Photography was the “new media” of the late 19th century. How did it change the role of artists? Discuss new media’s influence on the art of today.

Prepared by Eleanor Ramsay, This article originally appeared at

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winter projects

This site is now running on Joomla 1.5 Stable with the design rebuilt as 1.5 native template. This is a major rewrite of this powerful opensource CMS. I have been using it for a few years for variety of sites including, a portal for the Massachusetts College of Art + Design’s Art Education Department and, a music zine that’s been covering the Boston music scene for more than 25 years!(and the web for more than 10). I am also rebuilding the site with Joomla. Even though the company remains dormant, there’s some news to report and plenty … Continue reading

education and research

I am interested in discovering ways to constructively use new media in education, both in the classroom, and as a communication tool for educators. My thesis, Reflections in the Screen, explored new media’s role in the classroom and examined the virtual worlds of the graphical interface and ways it has become integrated into our visual literacy. In addition, I believe, it is also fundamentally changing the way we learn and remember. Some of my older research and coursepages are located at … Continue reading