Tech-savvy school incorporates “virtual sports” and “virtual music” in school curriculum
January 24, 2008
Universal High, an ICSE day-boarding school in Malad, Mumbai, has adopted Nintendo Wii for providing “Virtual PE” and “Virtual Music” lessons for its students.
The Nintendo Wii (pronounced “We”) is a video game console that allows users to control a game using physical gestures using motion sensing technology. In effect, players have to actually swing their arms to hit a ball while playing virtual Tennis or to bang a drum while playing virtual music. The school provides virtual lessons in addition to real life sports and music classes. The console is systematically incorporated in the PE and music curriculum by means of detailed lesson plans and role plays.
Says Mrs. Sharma, a parent, “I am sure an innovation like this can be a student’s first step towards a wider range of physical activities. I always wanted my son to try Yoga but he was reluctant to start. With this game, he can do Yoga and have fun in the process. Once he gets used to doing Yoga on the Wii, he will probably continue doing Yoga off it too”
Jesus S. M. Lall, the CEO of the Universal Group of Schools adds, “I think technology plays a great role in promoting physical activitiy. Kids of this generation are very gadget-savvy and take to such innovations like a bee to honey. Our kids have already started beating me in tennis, boxing and bowling! I am not a big fan of video games in general, but this one allows kids to enjoy while actually burning calories in the process. We certainly don’t see this as a replacement for real sports but it can certainly draw students in! The Wii will also also help students enjoy sports indoors during the rainy season. I have instructed all my schools to include the Wii in their PE and music lesson plans”
Jay P, the arts teacher of the school gives it a thumbs up while adding, “Kids absolutely love playing music on the Wii. It’s only been a few weeks since we introduced Wii music in our curriculum but I’m already seeing results. Personally, I see this as a great tool to generate the “wow factor” and spark interest in children. I love seeing children discover their own creativity and adding a love for music while having fun on the Wii. This can only help grow music awareness and interest amongst school children”
“We have this student who’s a little challenged physically in one of his feet, so we are not able to engage him in competitive sports, but with the Wii around he doesn’t feel left out. I am particularly impressed by its yoga and aerobics training features. A student can actually get trained under a virtual trainer and analyse whether his or her pose or balance is proper. In fact, we’ve gone the whole hog and introduced a competitive event called “Virtual Sports” in our Annual Sports Day on 30th January” says, Zarin Virji, the principal of the school.
Universal High sees this initiative as an endeavour to engage students and create opportunities for them to be successful in their co-curricular pursuits. On the other hand, game play as part of daily school is a child’s dream come true.
About Universal High
Universal High, a part of the Universal Education Group, is an ICSE school based in Malad, Mumbai. Being a day boarding school, students spend their whole day from 9am to 5pm in the school. The school is housed in a purpose-built fully-air-conditioned glass-and-steel building. The school puts a great emphasis on technology-enabled-learning. The school boasts of plasma TVs in each smart class, laptop labs and learning management systems. More information about the school is available at http://www.universalhigh.edu.in.
Contact: press [at] universalhigh.edu.in