I attended the Virtual Worlds – Best Practices in Education conference – which was held in Second Life. No registration fees, no hotel rooms to book, and I could attend sessions while sitting on the couch next to my cats. Not that I don’t love in-person conferences (I’m lucky enough to be attending two this year). But for a lifelong-learning junkie, this was just more icing on the cake. Besides, I only found out about it two days before it began, and I was still able to attend – how many times does that happen? 🙂
In one session, I learned about the “Stories of Conne River Project,” a collaboration between Memorial University’s (Newfoundland and Labrador, Canada) and the Miawpukek First Nation. Their website describes it as “an innovative project aimed at preserving and sharing the history and culture of the Miawpukek people of Conne River.” The project includes resources and activities available on their website, a DVD, and also a virtual recreation of a historic Miawpukek community, every detail of which was researched and built in the 3D environment of Second Life (clothing, artifacts, dwellings). The VWBPE presentation focused on how the participants used Machinima (a way of “filming” in Second Life) to create a film (story written by Chief Mi’sel Joe) called Muinji’j Becomes a Man.
The project will launch on March 31, 2010, but if you want to see some clips from the Machinima film, go visit their page here. The “world” where it was filmed exists in SL (and on the Teen Grid as well). Think of it – how many times do you get to see a documentary or a film, and then go to the set and interact with all of the elements? What a way to learn!