Pupils experience life under the ocean and in outer space in the Muirfield Centre's new immersive classroom
Pupils in North Lanarkshire can now experience what it’s like to be in outer space, under the ocean, on a World War 1 battlefield or even on top of Everest thanks to a new learning initiative which is the first of its kind in the UK.
The project has become a reality after North Lanarkshire Council teamed up with BT to bring the first 5G-enabled immersive classroom to Scotland.
The new immersive classroom has been developed within the Muirfield Community Centre in Cumbernauld where a room has been transformed into an exciting and engaging learning environment.
The 360-degree room creates a digital projection which uses all four classroom walls and the ceiling to bring the real-world into an immersive experience for students.
BT is making this immersive experience possible through its EE 5G network which brings ultrafast speeds and enhanced reliability for classrooms of the future.
Carbrain Primary pupils were the first to dive into the new experience with an underwater lesson about the ocean.
One pupil said his favourite part was seeing the Northern Lights, a subject he studied at school: “I loved the colours, it was as if I were seeing them in real life!”.
Another student enjoyed the Safari experience, saying “It was so cool to see the animals so close up.”
The concept aims to push beyond traditional methods of teaching to create an inclusive digital experience that helps explain abstract and challenging concepts through a 3D model.
It will also have the potential to support students with learning difficulties in developing imagination, creative and critical thinking and problem-solving skills.
“The immersive classroom goes beyond the traditional classroom boundaries,” explained Councillor Frank McNally, Convener of Education and Families with North Lanarkshire Council.
“Its potential uses really are limitless and we hope that it can be used to engage pupils who are perhaps turned-off by traditional learning experiences as well as by local community groups for example historical societies.
“This project shows that North Lanarkshire is at the cutting edge in terms of technology and connectivity and demonstrates our commitment to providing our pupils with outstanding learning opportunities.”