Dr. Cowin’s Merge Cube and Google Expedition Poster for the Virtual Poster Fair at the 2020 NAFSA Conference

When I submitted my poster to the 2020 NAFSA Conference I had no idea how much our country, the world, and education were going to change through COVID-19. Thank you to NAFSA eConnection for creating a virtual poster fair! I’m excited to see that many of the resources, ideas, and recommendations for virtual collaboration and connections are now recognized as fundamental for the future.

The Merge Cube lets you hold virtual 3D objects, enabling an entirely new way to learn and interact with the digital world. Google Expeditions lets a teacher take student explorers through collections of 360° and 3D images. Merge cube features a free Miniverse App incorporating Google expeditions such as the animals of the Galapagos or the Grand Canyons. The Merge Explorer features interactive experiences for elementary through middle school, where students can investigate a smoking volcano, examine a great white shark, and hold the earth in the palm of their hands. Using innovative virtual and augmented reality (VR/AR) technology, and aligned with Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS), students can learn about topics such as earth science, life cycles and traits, ocean animals, space systems, structure and properties of matter, energy, waves, light, sound and more.

In this poster, you will find a QR code with a printable merge cube which has limited functionality for you to try it out. Download and launch a free Cube app on your smartphone or tablet. – I included 3 free Merge apps with their QR codes on the poster. Point your device at the Cube. Watch the Cube transform into a virtual object!

SmartSelect_20180605-211043_Explorer

Multisensory Learning
The Merge Cube enables a multisensory learning experience since students can engage with digital content naturally and intuitively using visual, auditory, kinesthetic, and tactile senses, for more memorable and impactful learning.
Developing Spatial Abilities
With the Merge Cube, students practice and develop spatial intelligence through manipulating and inspecting digital 3D objects. Students with strong spatial abilities excel in STEM fields, allowing them to go further.

Google Expedition
Google Expedition can be accessed either in an immersive VR view or a 360 mobile view, by clicking on the non-VR view icon in the bottom right-hand corner of the screen. This non-VR view means that students do not have to use any additional technology, their mobile device is enough. Students are probably familiar with using their device in this manner, due to Facebook 360. There are more than 900 virtual field trips available in the Google spreadsheet included through a QR code for you. You can take your students anywhere in the world from the Grand Canyons to the Louvre.

 

Author: drcowinj

As an Assistant Professor & Practicum Coordinator for TESOL and Bilingual Programs at Touro College, Graduate School of Education my focus is on the Responsibility to Touro Students (Teaching), Responsibility to the Discipline (Scholarship), and Responsibility to Touro College and Community (Service). As the Practicum Coordinator, my Teacher Professional Practice identifies those aspects of a teacher’s responsibilities that have been documented through empirical studies and theoretical research as promoting improved student learning. In the framework, the complex activity of teaching is divided into the seven New York State Annual Professional Performance Review (APPR) Standards for teacher evaluation that are clustered into four domains of teaching responsibility (as framed in the Teachscape Danielson Rubric approved by New York State). I strive to inspire students to be creative and to model the love of lifelong learning by inculcating the habits and attitudes that create agile mindsets. 21st-century education extends well beyond the classroom and incorporates online learning technologies for L2 language acquisition and current global trends in teaching English as a Second Language. I participate fully in the larger world of TESOL academic discipline as elected Vice President and Chair Elect for the New York State, NYSTESOL organization, for the 2021 conference. Ongoing research, expressed in scholarly contributions to the advancement of knowledge is demonstrated through publications (articles in Education Update), presentations, and participation in academic conferences, blogging, and other scholarly activities, including public performances and exhibitions at conferences and workshops. Of particular interest to me are The Blockchain of Things and its implications for Higher Education; Current Global Trends in TESOL; Developing Materials and Resources in Teaching English; E-learning & Micro-Methodology in TESOL; E-Resources Discovery and Analysis; and Language Acquisition and the Oculus Rift in VR.

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