education with kinect


Top Applications for Kinect in Education

Sunday, June 5th, 2011

The results are in! After compiling results, these are the top application categories educators would like to see “Kinectified” with key bindings for use in their classrooms:

I could focus on specific applications (with the exception of Google Earth), but my intent is to decentralize control and have the community determine the direction of a lot of these initiatives.

The key binding contributions for each of these application categories have been placed in the community forums.

A couple of guiding suggestions:

  • – Determine what the most appropriate software is within each category
  • – How to compartmentalize efforts so contributors are working on unique components (meaning each person’s role is to focus on key binding gestures for specific features.

Contributors will be acknowledged in credits when this project is presented to Microsoft (official press release coming soon).

How can you help? Join the community. Once your registration is approved, you can begin contributing.

With our combined efforts, we can help classrooms evolve beyond the rhetoric.



Learning with Kinect: Follow the Path of Innovation

Sunday, May 8th, 2011

Success within your professional career is largely a matter of aligning yourself with the core values of your surrounding environment; but occasionally, adhering to your environment and the status quo may come at the expense of innovation. If the system you’re operating within is isn’t aligned with innovative practices, your innovative idea may not fit well within the organization and may threaten its foundation and your personal success.

Our students and our teachers deserve to be guided by best practices, not practices that place excessive emphasis on teaching “tricks” that help attain a passing score on standardized assessments. Please don’t misunderstand me – I do teach shortcuts to help attain that important passing score. It’s hard to escape, and at times, “tricks” do help students succeed as we’ve defined it. But if better options exist – options that can help teach content and minimize the “tricks” – we need to spend more time pursuing those.

Will gesture-based learning innovate schools? As an educator, I strongly feel like this dimension of learning may help teachers, administrators, students, legislators, and state education agencies share harmony amongst their respective values. For most schools, these new dimensions of learning currently exist as mere ideas that need innovators to effectively integrate them in learning environments.

It’s important to step back from time-to-time and make sure that the road we’re on is worth taking. If innovative instructional practices can help us focus on what’s most important in our classrooms – rigor, relevancy, and relationships – then that’s the path we need to follow.

Using the Kinect for learning (gesture-based learning) is just one new paradigm to explore; what other innovative avenues have you been exploring? Feel free to leave your comments in the community forum or on the Kinect Education Facebook Page.




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