Announced at Google I/O in May, the Google Expedetion program was a fascinating look at using low-cost VR through Google’s Cardboard to expand learning experiences to school programs throughout the world. Today, Google has announced they’re beginning to roll their Expeditions Pioneer Program out to schools in the US, UK, Brazil, New Zealand and Australia.
Signing up at the Expeditions Pioneer page, schools have the opportunity to take part in the program which will seed a kit to schools containing ‘everything a teacher needs to run a virtual trip for their class’. So, what’s in the kit?
ASUS smartphones, a tablet for the teacher to direct the tour, a router that allows Expeditions to run without an Internet connection, and Google Cardboard viewers or Mattel View-Masters that turn phones into virtual reality headsets.
There’s a library of over 100 virtual tours for teachers to choose from, ranging in place from trips to Mars, the Great Barrier Reef and the Great Wall of China. Google has partnered with educational and production companies to add to this range of titles, with partners such as PBS, educational publisher Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, and the Wildlife Conservation Society set to deliver content.
The jewel in the crown would seem to be upcoming content from world famous broadcaster and naturalist, David Attenborough who with his production company Alchemy, will also provide experiences.
Google has also arranged for The Starfish Foundation provide experiences which show a virtual day in the life of a range of professional careers, including a veterinarian and computer scientist.
If you’d like your childs school to participate, talk to your childs school first and point them towards the sign-up page – and let us know if they’re selected.