Wichita Area Technical College and Goodwill Industries of Kansas, Inc. are working together to develop a Mobile Learning Lab to allow middle/high students and adult learners alike to have the opportunity to experience the thrill of hands-on, interactive learning in “high-demand technical fields” as identified by the Kansas Department of Commerce. The goal of this mobile lab is to educate Kansans by bringing these in-demand careers to their doorsteps through the use of technology. In this mobile lab, students will experience actual and virtual tools that are used in STEM careers throughout Kansas and the United States. The lab will capture the interest of all ages through exploration of STEM education using virtual reality, information technology, and hands-on experiences. This exploration of technical careers will ultimately lead more Kansans into career pathways such as Aviation, Advanced Manufacturing, and Health Sciences.
How do the students learn from this program?
The FutureMaker Lab consists of three stations inside of the trailer.
- Virtual Welding station
- Virtual Painting
- A device that introduces Robotic learning
Adults will be teaching each station the students are in. They basically explain what it does, how does it work and what happens. Students will also be able to use the equipment they provide in the lab. To ensure students receive the most benefit from the visit, teachers will be given curriculum and a lesson plan to present to their students before the Learning Lab arrives in their community.
Utilizing a virtual reality welding system, students will try their hand at steel welding in a virtual helmet which simulates the real thing in surprising fashion. This will offer students a look into the balance of art and science that skilled welding requires. Instructors will aid in making the connection between careers, and the importance of welded metal joints in manufactured everyday use products.
Using a virtual spray-gun painting device, students will experience in 3D what it might be like to paint objects such as a car door or engine cowling. Once finished, each student can see areas where paint was too thin, too thick, or coated well. Instructors will then assist students in making the connections between cost and quality.
Introduction to Robotic Learning
Using small mobile robots that respond to specific colors in combinations, students will be asked to “program” a course that will successfully guide each robot to a destination. This fun demonstration offers students a unique introduction into computer programming as a means step in the process of automating tasks, such as self-driving cars. Instructors will offer a look into the future of industrial automation, and career paths in this growing field of study.
What is Z-Space?
Z-Space is a leading-edge technology provider that delivers a new way of learning with its flagship product, zSpace®. Focused on STEM education, medical instruction, and corporate training, Z-Space inspires and accelerates understanding through real-world virtual reality. Z-Space was named “Cool Vendor” by Gartner, Inc. and awarded “Best New Product” by Tech and Learning Magazine. Z-Space is a privately held, venture-backed company located in Sunnyvale, California, and has filed more than 30 patents for its innovative technologies. For more information, visit www.zspace.com, or follow on Twitter @zSpace.
Z-Space for Education is an all-in-one virtual reality desktop featuring education software that is easy-to-use, natural and intuitive. In addition, Z-Space for Education includes High-speed head-tracking, enabling smooth interaction between students and 3D objects.
Z-Space for Education includes:
- High-speed head-tracking, enabling smooth interaction between students and 3D objects
- The world’s only virtual reality stylus, enabling students to learn by doing
- AMD (NASDAQ: AMD) FirePro graphics and liquidVR technology, resulting in the most realistic and comfortable real-world virtual reality experience
- Z-Space for Education: expanding across the US
More than 90 school districts are using Z-Space across the country. Los Altos School District is starting its third year using Z-Space and has seen a direct impact on student learning. In the districts already using Z-Space, students have explored virtual volcanoes and built advanced electricity boards. The system provides students with a realistic learning environment and a personalized learning experience that aligns with the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), Common Core and state standards. Virtual-holographic images can be “lifted” from the screen and manipulated with the stylus. Some applications provide multi-sensory feedback; for example, students working with a virtual heart can see it pumping, hear it, and feel it beating.