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NASA Explores: VR in the Classroom

Listen and learn

Listen and learn : Snapshot

Sunday, June 23, 10:30–11:30 am
Location: 201BC

Presentation 1 of 2
Other presentations:
Cellverse: Virtual Reality for Cellular Biology

Rachel Power  
Share the excitement of America's return to human spaceflight on a VR field trip with NASA's Commercial Crew Program. Become immersed in a unique experience that puts you inside facilities while never leaving the classroom. Then connect with experts to ask questions live and learn about STEM careers at NASA.

Audience: Teachers, Professional developers, Library media specialists
Skill level: Beginner
Attendee devices: Devices useful
Attendee device specification: Smartphone: Windows, Android, iOS
Tablet: Android, iOS, Windows
Participant accounts, software and other materials: NASA CCP App - Not yet publicly available, Devices will also be used to facilitate discussion/Q&A
Focus: Digital age teaching & learning
Topic: Augmented, mixed and virtual realities
Grade level: 6-12
Subject area: Career and technical education, STEM/STEAM
ISTE Standards: For Coaches:
Digital Age Learning Environments
  • Model effective classroom management and collaborative learning strategies to maximize teacher and student use of digital tools and resources and access to technology-rich learning environments.
Teaching, Learning and Assessments
  • Coach teachers in and model design and implementation of technology-enhanced learning experiences addressing content standards and student technology standards.
For Educators:
  • Manage the use of technology and student learning strategies in digital platforms, virtual environments, hands-on makerspaces or in the field.
Related exhibitors: NASA - STEM on Station

Proposal summary

Purpose & objective

Participants will be able to discuss NASA's Commercial Crew Program with a basic understanding of goals and objectives for American human spaceflight to engage students in authentic STEM applications and help increase STEM literacy in the classroom.

Participants will know how to access NASA resources for STEM engagement and how to implement these tools to introduce STEM concepts in the classroom. NASA STEM content is based on national science and math standards and lesson plans employ the 5 E's model and the engineering design process, where applicable.

Participants will be able to use digital tools including a mobile app, VR, and distance learning to enhance the learning experience for students in middle and high school STEM classrooms.

Participants will be able to create STEM lessons that use digital tools to engage learners with STEM experts from NASA.

The goal is to one day have students who cannot travel to Kennedy Space Center experience a 360 launch live from anywhere in the world and feel inspired to pursue STEM careers and become STEM literate citizens.


The process for interaction throughout the presentation will be conferences i/o. This tool will allow the participants to ask questions and answer polls which will provide feedback to the presenter and other participants in real-time.

Introduction to NASA's Commercial Crew Program - Presenter will introduce CCP and why this is an exciting time in American spaceflight with an informational video. CCP is a public/private partnership that will launch American astronauts on American rockets from American soil to the space station using commercial partners. (5 min)

CCP App - Participants will use their own mobile device and the CCP app to select a mission, assign a crew, build a rocket, launch it to the space station, and dock the crew capsule. The presenter will share resources that will help educators use the CCP app to engage students and introduce NASA STEM content including engineering design challenges and hands-on science experiments demonstrated in microgravity. (10 min)

VR Field Trip - Participants will experience a VR field trip to NASA and Commercial Crew Partner facilities. This experiential learning opportunity is designed to introduce STEM concepts and their application to the real world. The immersive quality of VR engages participants in a common group activity while also allowing them to have a unique individual experience. The presenter will demonstrate how the teacher is able to facilitate the virtual field trip while the participants will experience the field trip from the student perspective. Following the VR field trip, the presenter will lead a discussion about hardware and software requirements and classroom implementation. (15 min)

NASA Chats - Presenter will facilitate a NASA Chat with an expert located remotely. Participants will be able to ask questions of the expert and learn how to access archived and upcoming chats to connect their students with NASA. Topics include engineering, research, missions, facilities, diversity, STEM careers, and more. Student research does not have to be limited to reading text or watching videos. This experience allows them to interact with people working in the real world. (20 min)

Debrief - Participants encouraged to share what they found most valuable from the presentation and how they will bring it back to their classrooms. (10)

Supporting research

Gadelha, R. (2018). Revolutionizing Education: The promise of virtual reality. Childhood Education, 94(1), 40–43. https://doi.org/10.1080/00094056.2018.1420362

ISHIZUKA, K. (2018). VR’s Real Impact. School Library Journal, 64(5), 20–21. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=ehh&AN=129347369&site=ehost-live

Johnston, E., Olivas, G., Steele, P., Smith, C., & Bailey, L. (2018). Exploring Pedagogical Foundations of Existing Virtual Reality Educational Applications: A Content Analysis Study. Journal of Educational Technology Systems, 46(4), 414–439. https://doi.org/10.1177/0047239517745560

PIERCE, D. (2018). VIRTUAL REALITY CHECK! (cover story). T H E Journal, 45(2), 14–18. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=ehh&AN=128565504&site=ehost-live

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Rachel Power, Kennedy Space Center

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