simAULA: Tomorrow's Teachers Training
Start date: Nov 1, 2010,
All teacher education programs require teacher candidates to have in-school practicum experiences. Placing student teachers in schools is not always easy, however, and it is getting harder. It thus becomes more difficult to find proper schools for the teacher candidates to practice teaching. simAULA will setup a virtual practicum in the form of a three-dimensional, online world adapted in the context of teaching-learning in a Primary School. Both active teachers and teachers-to-be will interact with avatars, develop lesson plans, and teach in the virtual classrooms. In order to provide interesting and effective learning activities, this project will focus on the pedagogical side based on the knowledge of teachers and pedagogic and psychology experts to define the behaviour model of the virtual students and create simulations and situations that are both pedagogically and educational sound. simAULA will take advantage of serious games technology to make the learning scenario engaging and interesting for the student. Via simulations, teachers will practice their teaching and classroom management skills within a fun and safe educational game environment. The simAULA output will be a training platform that will empower universities and schools with a very innovative simulation system enabling them to enhance the teaching abilities of their students though result-driven classroom practices. This platform will be piloted in Spain, United Kingdom, Italy, Bulgaria and Greece with 200 students and 60 teachers in 5 different languages. SimAULA will allow teachers to test out pedagogical ideas to see what combination of strategies helps all students learn and will serve as a powerful lifelong learning tool for all kind of trainers that need to enhance their teaching skills.
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