HMH & Pearson Dive into Virtual Reality Curriculum with Google Expeditions
This week both Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and Pearson announced partnerships with Google Expeditions, a program that allows teachers to take their students on virtual field trips using Google Cardboard. Since Google Expeditions launched in September 2015, over one million students from 11 different countries have taken virtual field trips. Now both HMH and Pearson are creating their own virtual reality experiences.
HMH announced that it will role out 20 HMH-branded Google Expeditions over the next few months, including trips to Gettysburg, the Alamo, Cape Canaveral, and more.
“Google Expeditions allows us to build more immersive learning experiences for our students than ever before,” said Mary Cullinane, HMH’s chief content officer in a press release. “We can take them on field trips under water, up mountains and even back in time in ways we could only have dreamed of just a few years ago.”
Pearson unveiled its first Google Expeditions at the International Society for Technology in Education conference in Denver earlier this week. The VR experience gives students a 3D tour of the London Transport Museum and allows them to dive deeper into certain museum exhibits or change directions.
“Imagine being a middle school student in Billings, Montana, with a keen interest in trains, who takes a field trip to the London Transport Museum on a Tuesday morning. Or a third grader in Toledo, Ohio, who wants to explore the depths of the sea and does just that on a Wednesday afternoon in science class -- all through the power of today’s digital learning technology,” said Mark Christian, Pearson’s director of learning and innovation in a press release.
Book Business anticipates that virtual reality will come to play a much larger role in the education space as more publishers test this new technology. Trade publishers too will feel the impact of this technology.
Ellen Harvey is a freelance writer and editor who covers the latest technologies and strategies reshaping the publishing landscape. She previously served as the Senior Editor at Publishing Executive and Book Business.