Shared Virtual Reality Simulations for Special Needs Pupils

Virtual reality (VR) offers many incredible opportunities when it comes to making learning and experiences more accessible for people with disabilities. The unique shared space provides multidimensional sensory experiences which are accessible for all.

Virtual reality can also help prepare pupils for real life situations, where they may be too anxious, or simply unable, to try in the real world. Our immersive spaces provide the perfect opportunity for pupils to familiarise themselves with situations in a safe and comfortable environment, before trying them ‘in the flesh’.

What makes our immersive spaces such a game-changer, is their ability to fully immerse pupils in safe, controlled, 360° virtual environments. Our spaces don’t require the use of a VR headset, meaning that teachers and carers can share the space, so pupils don’t feel isolated whilst trying new activities.

Our range of simulations include navigating the London underground, going shopping, getting a bus and boarding an aircraft.

Pupils can develop confidence and familiarity with environments that they may perceive as daunting or threatening. Because the simulations can be practiced with someone they trust, these ‘scary’ situations can be trialled and tested in a safe, secure and familiar environment.

Our simulations help the development of many key life skills, including navigation skills, social skills, time keeping and decision making, amongst many others.

Our environments simulate a person’s physical presence, and can also help pupils with disabilities expand their knowledge and skills in ways that wouldn’t otherwise be possible. This allows them to engage in activities relatively free from the limitations imposed by their disability.

Simulations can also be used to help pupils with communication challenges such as autism or Asperger’s, to practice social skills in non-threatening, familiar environments. Some of the simulations best suited to these individuals are shopping and getting on a bus, which can familiarise them with social situations.

For pupils with special educational needs arising from different disabilities, experiences can be adapted to suit them individually. This is made possible through the use of CGI (computer generated imagery) in our system, allowing the teacher or carer to alter each scenario. For example – the train could be empty, full of a handful of people, or jam-packed. The train could also turn up late, or never turn up. This flexibility means that individuals of all ages and abilities can use our platform to gain confidence and develop key life skills.

The skills can be practised in a controlled, reassuring environment, allowing them to prepare for an event with someone they trust. And if it gets too much, the system can whisk them away somewhere safe.

Simulations mean that preparing pupils for real life situations is made easier through experiencing new scenarios in a safe, yet realistic environment. We are currently developing more simulations, to ensure there is something for everyone to take part in!

To find out more about our Immersive Reality spaces, view our online brochure here, contact us at [email protected] or fill out our online form here. We’d love to hear from you!