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Katy Vance

Avatars Teach Teens About Self-Image | Edutopia - 3 views

  • Each time the students created a new avatar, Whiting would assign them to a different pod, or small group, within Teen Second Life. Pods of four or five students would virtually fly to a private space where they used chat tools to discuss a set of questions posed by Whiting.
    • Katy Vance
       
      I LOVE this! What a great way to get students talking about a difficult concept.  
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    Eighth graders type furiously on the keyboards in a middle school computer lab. Their spirited online chat is all about appearances: Who looks gross? Who wants a makeover? Most teachers would ban this kind of digital discussion, but not health teacher Diane Whiting...
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    "I immediately understood the potential," Sheehy says. "In creating an avatar, students would have so many opportunities to reflect on the choices they make." The site allows teens to modify every aspect of their avatar's appearance, including body type, hair color, skin tone, and wardrobe. Talking about the choices the students were making was the logical next step for learning.
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