Tuesday, June 26, 2012

4 ways a new reality is augmenting education

Guest Post by Brendan OKeefe 

I remember being excited by the cool uses of Augmented Reality (AR) in Minority Report and wishing real gesture based computing was here now. I remember the first time I built something using AR tools thinking that this something had changed forever. Being an innovative educator, what excited me most was how this could be used as a tool to engage learners.

It’s been many years since the release of Minority Report and now it seems that finally, there is a shift happening and it’s going to bring some exciting new possibilities to your web browser in the next 18 months or so. You can see a sneak peek here in The Awesome Web.

There are many ways to use augmented reality in your teaching. Here are my top 4 suggestions for winning with the use of augmented reality in your school, community or library.

Add rich media and social media to any book or object. For example augmented reality can connect your books to Video, 3D, Images, Audio, Pinterest, goodreads, Shelfari, Great Book Stories, YouTube, Vimeo, facebook, Twitter, Amazon and more. See examples of Augmented Reality used for education via books here.

Create engaging homework in a neat little digital bundle accessible from most any mobile device simply by scanning an image. Call them digital study bundles, and make them accessible via some of these mediums; posters, book covers, printed photos, places youth congregate, hijacked public posters. See tours for more information.

Posters - Hot Topics/News/Special Days
Bring hot topics, special days, discussion points and recent news to life with AR. How about Earth Day, Mother’s Day, Christmas, Elections, Natural Disasters, Thanksgiving, Australia Day.
See examples of Augmented Reality for education via posters here on Teachers pay Teachers.

Tours and Public Spaces
Get your students out and about, active and stimulated. The fact is movement aides learning. Find a way to create a homework or study tour using AR.

Embed homework assignments into spaces where young people congregate before and after school. The bus stops, train stations near school or the big transportation hubs. Or how about the food court or other popular areas in the local shopping mall. You could also try placing a weeks worth of homework around town at local landmarks. Stay tuned as I will be piloting this here in Australia and documenting the findings very soon.

If you want to explore more on AR in Education...

Get in touch with Brendan Okeefe to share your thoughts and ideas, request a book to be augmented, or learn how to augment reality yourself by contacting him at brendanokeefe.com.


  1. Why are you yelling at me?

  2. I was so excited when I stumbled across this blog on AR. I had never heard of it. I'm wondering if this is something we might be able to incorporate into our school yearbook next year. Wouldn't it be amazing to layer links to videos of the extra pictures we were not able to use, or past season records (sports) or recorded interviews of the players and coaches, teachers, students or administration? The possibilites are endless. This is definately something I am going to have to research further. Thanks for adding the helpful links.