Students have been learning history from textbooks for a very long time. But why use such primitive and ineffective methods when modern technology can enable virtual and hands-on experiences?
We made an educational simulation focusing on learning about medieval civilization. Throughout our years in school we have found that students often can relate to material being taught because they don't have a visual to relate to and interact with. Our application solves that problem because students can now learn more intuitively and have real time interactions with the lesson at their own page.
The objective of our history tour simulation is to provide students with a more intuitive understanding of topics. Our current simulation is one focusing on Jerusalem and how religion played a large role in its legacy. The player is able to navigate across the city in a guided tour, with a path to keep students on track, as well as audio to provide the information. Once the guided tour is finished, users can then explore the city at free will. Such freedom can help retain memory of associated topics, as well as enhance interest with real-world application. However, throughout the process we faced several problems of varying difficulty.
We made the user interface very simple, the player will use WASD to move around the map and use the mouse to control the tilt and view the map at different angles. We built the entire city using the different assets that were available to us. Unfortunately, the assets did not contain colliders. This meant that we had to tailor colliders to each of the buildings in order for us to not go through it. We used forums and experimented with different colliders till we found a solution which was to add a mesh collider to each. We also wanted to add a UI element in which the markers that we ran over would turn green from red. We tried a large variety of things from creating massive arrays and X and Z pos databases for us to change the material color. We finally found a solution when we found that the colliders could measure when another has intersected its plane so we used that and told the markers to change to green when the player has intersected.
In the future, we plan on adding more maps and content to our base Jerusalem model. In addition, we will include some kind of implementation to check the students' knowledge of the information given in the tour. This will be through the use of questions being popped up in between stations. In addition we plan on adding more civilizations to our simulation to enable the use of more teachers being able to use our project.