The European CONNECT project develops and uses leading edge information and communication technology to create an advanced learning environment, the virtual science thematic park. It connects 'informal' learning strategies and formal curricular activities in science education, involving students and teachers in extended episodes of playful learning.
This enhanced collaboration scheme between schools and museums or science centers exploits the potential of advanced information and communication technology – and in particular the evolution from wired to virtual wireless learning environments – to support the integration of everyday 'free-choice learning' activities with the science curriculum. In order to fully support the innovative approaches to science teaching and learning developed along the pedagogical pathway of the CONNECT project there will be parallel work on the technological front. Here Fraunhofer FIT is a major contributor to the project: we develop the mobile Augmented Reality (AR) system that enhances the learning experience of the museum’s visitors. This includes the careful choice of appropriate hardware components, the adaptation of FIT’s Augmented Reality framework for the mobile scenario and the development of viable interaction mechanisms.
The mobile AR system will be fully integrated with the web-based CONNECT platform and will allow students in a classroom to interact with the museum’s visitors and to participate remotely using a video connection.
The CONNECT project was funded in part through the European IST program.