Roadmap to the near future

The below is some thinking on where we want to head with this project. Your comments and ideas are MOST welcome. Please email or @ianchia on Twitter to join the discussion on this wiki.


  • What if we could leverage our current DIY app & website into a free, collaborative platform for simple, short form blogging about communities and diversity?
  • What if we publish the children-created content to shared by classrooms around the world. Social depictions of local communities by the kids - for themselves, their local communities and others around the world.
  • What if the content needed to be created only once, but became viewable via the web, the iPhone and iPod Touch and iPad?

How would this work in real life?

Let's imagine a free website, where any class can come and add a few posts about where they live, and their local community. To accompany this, they can also upload some 360 panoramic photos, and perhaps some local audio recording of the children, or a local community event.

An example 360 degree, interactive panoramic photograph. This $1 app is on the iTunes App Store, (made by Occipital) and works on iPhone, iPod Touch (with camera) and iPad. This photo below is at a smaller thumbnail-type size as a brief example. Larger versions follow later on this page.

This is what we're planning for the I Live Over Here website. A free blogging website designed for easy and free participation. Classes from around the world join a global community, so that participant classes can comment on each other's posts and learn ways of global, digital citizenship. It's a meeting place to find collaborations, and a springboard for classes to continue the discussion on their own blogs. It's a very basic form of social networking to introduce schools and teachers who want to dip their toes in without technical and bureaucratic complications within different education systems.

The site and accompanying free iPod Touch/iPad app can browse this data, but also the much richer content from classes that have created a "full app's worth".

If the classes wanted to create an app that have a full range of content (beyond 3 posts with matching 360pano photos) - their own "app" with augmented reality and a broad listing of entries and locations, that's when they commit to purchasing a class licence (probably around $15 per class, and comes with a range of curriculum and guidelines for teachers, as well as full access to the content management system behind the app, which allows the entries to be created.)

The opportunities for the app are much wider than a "tourism" app. Here are some examples from teachers who've contacted us about how they might use the app:

- a high school Indonesian language teacher in Perth, Australia would like her students to create a resource for Indonesian immigrants to find local resources in the city of Perth. Her students would do the research, translate into Indonesian and make it freely available for the local Indonesian community in Australia.

- an elementary science teacher who lives near the Great Lakes in the USA would like her students to research, photograph and write about the local wildlife. She sees it as an opportunity for children to learn about their local habitat, conservation and be a resource to share and collaborate with science classes in other countries.

- language arts plus drama, with a twist of transliteracy. There are games on mobile phones that use location based data, ranging from FourSquare to Shadow Cities. Students can create fictional narratives in their local communities (imagine a spy mystery etc.), enact a performance with photography and audio. As others visit the locations, a narrative is gradually pierced together by discovering a full picture.

Some influences from around the web...

Toni Ford @toniford took her class to Amsterdam and documented their excursion as a blog. Note how the student created work unites literacy, photography and geography skills? However, this is a web 2.0 "document". The students are writing to the world, and invite comments, which are also published on their site.

This is a view of their home page. Imagine each town looking a bit like this.

Here's a blog entry on one specific visit.

A larger version of a 360 pano. Click here to view it full screen.

Imagine visiting virtual tours of classes and cities around the world, contributed by children and youth. Other participating students see what has been achieved and are enticed to achieve this, with naturally accompanying learning. They can see on a website, and if they or a parent or teacher with an iPhone etc., easily do the same for $1 for the app, and free access to the website.

This is a photograph on top of a hotel in Singapore from my recent family vacation. Click here to see it full screen.

Related research on Literacies 2.0 - it's covers a wide breadth of literacies, to read the entire thread, please click "Load more..." at the bottom to continually load the whole thread. There is a large portion in the Storify document regarding uses of blogging in classrooms around the world.

Some examples using blogging in the classroom, related to this project include:
@Grade1 Aviva's class blogging & tweeting Grade 1&2 Her class blog - her kids' blogs (to change in September 2011)
@Kathleen_Morris (Australia) Grade 2/3s class blogging global collaborative projects

The Ugandan Project - a collaboration with lower elementary/primary classes around the world.
Visitors to the Ugandan Global Project

Ugandan Global Project 2010

@DeputyMitchell whole school blogging project

Important links to keep

 - This document of our proposed plan

 - Link to the home page of this collaborative wiki for curriculum planning

...and examples of our initial technology currently used in commercial (non-education) projects.

 - a version of our Augmented Reality app used commercially by a regional tourism board in Australia 

 - a different version of our app used for a regional art exhibition by a collective of visual artists, with an accompanying website that shares the same data as the app

 - the data from the GPS locations in the app, shown in the Open Studios exhibition website. Imagine how this might look at a global scale on a Google Map, with locations from the 360 panoramic class bloggers and accompanying short posts. Classes diving into the inquiry based learning curriculum show a richer set of locations for each town, and the app shows a different interface. The graphics are designed by individual classes.

 - the data from each artist appears on the Open Studios website. You can see that it's published using the same content for the iPhone/iPad app, but the design is appropriate presented for the web, instead of an iPhone or iPad. Same content, different look and feel. Similar context but appropriate for different technology.