Welcome to Oz Educators SLED (Second Life Educators) General SL Info and Newbie tips - Dean Groom

Developed by San Franciso based company Linden Lab, Second Life is an online 3D virtual world currently gaining in popularity around the world.

Second Life allows users or 'residents' to come together to interact, play, learn, do business and communicate in an online environment which is 100% user owned and created. The platform provides tools which allow residents to build their own environments, create highly personalised avatars, clothes, vehicles and all sorts of amazing virtual objects.

Second Life residents can engage in rich, sensory experiences, authentic contexts, activities, and opportunities for reflection that form an exciting new domain for a range of educational applications including distance education, vocational and tertiary education and workplace training.

For more information visit the Getting Started with Second Life page.

Source : Jokaydia.com

For more information about Second Life - from an education perspective - please visit Jo Kay's excellent wiki

OzEducators Newbie Meeting

Please read the information below to learn how to get a SL Account and download the SL client.

I am part of the Jokadia Community in SL, so invite you to explore that space with us on Sunday 18th May - 8pm AEST to 9pm AEST (though it is likely that people will hang around much longer). Click here to teleport to the Island Meeting Place. This will boot the SL client and ask you to sign in. It will then take you to the Islands of Jokaydia.

Once you have registered your Avatar's name with SL - PLEASE update this page with the name! - that way, if you get lost I can teleport you to us! I can't do that if I don't know your SL name : my avatar is called 'slammed Aabye'.

Register for a Second Life Account.

Whilst you can register via Second Life website - I recommend that you register your account (to create your avatar) at New Media Consortium (NMC) - This is an educational space in SL. At times the registration process via the main SL site can be problematic. There is not FEE, charges or obligation if you join via NMC. You will also have a great starting point for SL as a Newbie - hey we were all n00bs once!

Click here to get a Second Life Account via NMC or Linden Labs

Download the client

Second Life runs a 'client' application - which is FREE. Linden are forever updating this client, so grab the latest version here.

Second Life is not 'school' friendly - in terms of networking - it requires your firewall to allow ports to be opened to allow data to flow. The single biggest barrier to SL in education is the willingness of the IT Department to allow this. It is not scary, not dangerous, but many EduITs are still fighting the proxy wars. Be nice and explain to them that the world is moving forwards and is indeed round, not flat.

Whether or not you can use SL with students in in some ways secondary to the way Educators are using SL. Professional Development and extending your Personal Learning Network is one obvious example of this. There are many. many educational events held all the time - and in SL you can meet and talk to the real person behind the avatar. The EduBlog awards are held in RL and in SL, so you can go and meet Bloggers from around the world.

More stuff : Students and SL

There are student projects in SL. If you are 'getting into' virtual worlds, then I have a Ning group called "SecondClassroom" and a student space called "TeenSecondClassroom" - you are welcome to join. The purpose of that group is to develop practical projects using virtual spaces, not just SL, games and other technologies. The aim is to have, over time, a place to share ideas and develop projects to that other teachers can share and expand on the ideas. Collaboration is possible via TeenSecondClassroom - where we create a GROUP and then students join that group in their own right. They use that space to blog their 'out of world' work. The space is supported by a number of experienced SLers - Including Jo Kay, Alan Lavine, Westley Field, Judy O'Connell to name a few. We hope that the group will help fast track ideas and PD for teachers.

In Late August - I hope to be able to offer teachers who have developed an idea for students - a free entry for that project - into a private Teen Island. The students are sim-locked - so can't leave it or access anything else. So it is secure. By developing the idea in SecondClassroom, we hope we can allow teachers and students to explore educational ideas in the sim. Most probably, this would be over period of time - the work is then reported on back in the Ning Group to further assist other teachers and educators.