Imagine a lesson where you are able to interact with moving blood cells on a floor and wall that responds to your steps or touch ; a lesson in which you can see a beating heart holographically; a lesson where an augmented reality app allows you to transport a Tyrannosaurus Rex into your classroom- such lessons are taking place at Talbot Heath School on a daily basis for its pupils aged 3-18. Their world of learning is being transformed, as they harness the possibilities of new technologies. Having developed their drawing skills, Year 7 pupils are lectured on architecture by a university expert from AUB, before designing their own buildings, first on paper and then digitally using CAD (Computer Aided Design). Finally, they step into their buildings using virtual reality and are able to modify their design accordingly.
A sense of awe, wonder and curiosity is developed on a daily basis as pupils explore, discover and experiment. The size and scale of the interactive wall enables them to develop a sense of spatial and dimensional awareness, thereby understanding the difference between the macro and the micro.
Yet, while experiencing reality ( both augmented and virtual), they are offered a broad range of hands on, ‘ real’ experiences that are so important to developing all-round skills ; within the design studio they learn to saw, shape, mould, join; in forest school they bake, whittle, carve and drill; in Food and Nutrition lessons and Textile lessons they devise and create, working skilfully with their hands; our musical and dramatic performers learn the power of voice, and physical expression.
The human is cherished while the understanding of the digital is enhanced. Ethics is taught throughout the school, as is personal, spiritual and moral development. Pupils learn the importance of the value and worth of the individual in this technological age, so that their decisions and actions demonstrate an appreciation of our planet and all those sharing it.
Pupils view the future as something to be embraced rather than feared. They know that they will leave school with the knowledge and skills required for this rapidly changing world. At Talbot Heath the future is already here.