• School uses virtual reality for ‘school trips’

A school in East London is using virtual reality to take pupils ‘school trips’, to places like the Buckingham Palace and the Taj Mahal, without ever leaving the classroom.

Barclay Primary School, in Leyton, is part of the pilot scheme being run by Google’s Expeditions Pioneer programme. The project using a smartphone, working together with a cardboard stereoscopic viewer, to create a virtual reality experience.

Schools can simply download the Google Expeditions app, and when pupils wear the headset they are immediately able to experience somewhere outside the classroom. The teacher then acts as the tour guide, and can highlight areas of interest on their tablet.

Jessica Holland, a former teacher working with the programme, said: “Teachers really wanted a way to inspire and engage their students and bring the outside world into the classroom, so we have used that as our guiding principle to create Expeditions.

“If we look across Google we have Classroom, products for education, which has grown to over 10 million users in a year. We have Google Cardboard, which is this virtual reality platform, and all this amazing 360-degree imagery from Google Earth. We thought, what if we were able to put that together in a meaningful way to allow teachers to be able to guide their students to different places around the world.”