Introducing Preservice Teachers to Online Interactive Learning Games
Abstract: Whyville.net is a free, online environment where 8 million registered tweens engage in game-based learning on their own time. Established in 1999, funds awarded by agencies such as the National Science Foundation, NASA, industry and private foundations have permitted Whyville to continue to develop research-based learning resources for educators and students without charge. This paper introduces several of the more than 100 Whyville virtual environments in the context of recent enhancements allowing formal or informal education teachers to register students under them as a class. Potential benefits of these affordances for future teachers and teacher educators are discussed.