At its best Applied Learning creates a real world experience to learn or practice skills and allows one to imagine what it might be like performing a task. When we created our online debate program and virtual world life skills programs those ideas are what drove the design and implementation. Today we are running both of these programs for students with special needs.
We might all be familiar with what happens at a formal school debate. Pro. Con. Point. Counter Point etc. But think about the preparation that goes into a debate. There’s the research, the building of your argument, the anticipation of the opposing argument. Then there’s the execution of it all: presenting your argument, listening and formulating a response to your opponent’s argument – skills many of us use every day. Imagine winning your debate. Imagine winning the championship! Cue the victory song getting louder! This is “Learning by Doing” or Applied Learning and it provides a foundation of experience and skill building like no other.
Our online debate program focuses primarily on students with special needs and started with the New York City’s District 75 and can be implemented at a school district or co-curricular program near you. LearningTimes provides the entire experience as a service including the technology, moderation, scoring, curriculum and teacher/coach training and support.
Using a virtual word to simulate a real world experience isn’t all that new anymore. Role playing video games are incredibly sophisticated and engage players on every level not to mention we’re on the cusp of the metaverse increasingly become mainstream. LearningTimes has been involved in “3D Worlds” for over 15 years and we’ve experienced first hand that they are a great place to learn and practice a skill.
Our life skills course takes place online in a virtual world and teaches skills to students with special needs, such as job interviewing, management of household finances, maintaining a home, and workplace social interaction. It provides students with a place to practice these skills and prepare them for what to expect in these real life situations. LearningTimes provide the entire experience as a service including the technology, facilitation, curriculum and teacher/coach training and support and is designed to be implemented either with a school district or as a stand alone co-curricular program.