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Read the article on what you can learn with the virtual laboratories of the Moscow Electronic School library and how they are convenient for students and teachers.

Create your own puzzle, conduct experiments in thermodynamics, learn Python or Pascal – this and much more can be done in virtual laboratories “Moscow Electronic School”(“MESH”). Online simulators of experiments and experiments help schoolchildren to study the properties of various things and phenomena, to create their own objects. And with their help, schoolchildren can conduct such experiments that cannot be performed in a real laboratory. We will tell you how the virtual laboratories “MES” are arranged, and find out how they are useful for students and teachers.

What is a virtual laboratory

In essence, a virtual laboratory is an environment that, on the screen of a tablet, smartphone, computer or classroom interactive panel, simulates the instruments of a training laboratory. Here you can assemble electrical circuits, build drawings or graphs, take measurements, and so on. Now the MES library has 23 virtual laboratories in five subjects: physics, biology, mathematics, computer science and technology.

The laboratories can be used by both teachers and students. Teachers use them in the classroom and create their own interactive tasks with their help. And children can do online experiments not only at school, but also at home. Thus, it is easier for schoolchildren to assimilate the material and repeat it.

Ohm’s law and magnetic fields

In virtual physics laboratories, you can conduct experiments in electrodynamics, optics, mechanics and other sections. Thus, using the virtual instrumentation of the Optics laboratory, which includes a collection of light sources, obstacles, optical elements and meters, one can carry out classical experiments to measure the wavelength of light, study the laws of geometric optics, and determine the optical properties of lenses and mirrors. Laboratory “Mechanics” opens up opportunities for experiments in statics and hydrostatics, kinematics, dynamics and conservation laws.

In the laboratory “Electrodynamics” users received a “black box” at their disposal. With its help, you can create fascinating riddle problems to determine the instruments involved in the experiment, their elements and characteristics of any difficulty level, including the Olympiad one (the “black box” hides them from users). And there is also an opportunity to turn the laboratory into a place for virtual fights and entire tournaments.

“For example, children learn Ohm’s law – how the strength of the current depends on the voltage. They have all the tools they need on the side panel. They use a mouse to transfer a resistor, an ammeter, a voltmeter, a current source to the working field, all this is connected according to a circuit with wires, they put a battery and take measurements. You can replace the resistor – take it with more or less resistance. Children can see the dependence of the current strength on the voltage for different resistors and compare them, ”explains Yulia Kazakova, a physics teacher at Bauman Engineering School No. 1580.

Quite recently a virtual laboratory “Electromagnetic field. Faraday “. Here you can study electric and magnetic fields as well as electromagnetic phenomena. It is possible to select the desired parameters and properties of objects, save your experience or experiment at any stage, and then continue it.

The advantage of virtual laboratories is that they do not limit the ability of teachers and students to conduct experiments. For example, during real laboratory tests, children work with a voltage source of about 4.5 volts – it is no longer possible. In a virtual environment, there are no such restrictions, there you can simulate any parameters.

“It would be interesting to develop these things in the direction of research work for children who study physics in depth. That is, to create experiments that cannot be carried out in real conditions or that are not included in the school curriculum. These are great opportunities! For example, it would be interesting for children to repeat the experience of Galileo Galilei – how he threw balls from the Leaning Tower of Pisa, studied the uniformly accelerated motion of bodies using an inclined plane. Or to recreate the Ampere experience – to look at the interaction of conductors with current and measure the Ampere force. In real life, this is a difficult experience to replicate, ”says Yulia Kazakova.

At the same time, the teacher notes, virtual laboratories are good as a supplement to real ones, not a substitute for them. Virtual work, no matter how good it is, will not replace work with real devices, phenomena and objects.

“Some things that are impossible or very difficult to recreate in real life can and should be created in a virtual environment. After all, you can do anything there – up to modeling the hadron collider, create extreme temperatures, magnetic and electric fields. Children can study the action of the Lorentz force on moving charged particles in a cathode ray tube, ”says the teacher.

Puzzles and robots

Rinat Zakirov, a physics teacher at school No. 1466, works with virtual laboratories not only in physics, but also in technology. In particular, with the section “Logitarium”, which is devoted to the study of complex mechanisms and principles of interaction between objects. And also “Logitarium” can serve as an excellent platform for intellectual competitions.

“I worked with the Logitarium virtual laboratory when our students took part in the Technoboy tournament. The children and I studied this virtual laboratory, in which it was required to compose puzzles based on Goldberg machines. “Logitarium” allows children to develop technical thinking, to show the operation of mechanisms such as gear wheels, rack and pinion gears and many others. New mechanisms are periodically added to the laboratory, ”says the teacher.

The lab helps children develop their intelligence, embody original ideas when creating Goldberg machines – a mechanism where each action is an impetus to the next action – and technical puzzles based on them. And for teachers of technology, physics and computer science, the laboratory allows you to create interactive models to demonstrate devices from the world of technology and mechanics.

“Children really like this story, they are happy to create mechanisms, invent their own puzzles. There is such an option – to save the puzzle and let classmates solve it, – says Rinat Zakirov. – I tried to show “Logitarium” to primary school students – they are interested, but still difficult. But starting from the seventh grade, children are already quite capable of creating complex models on their own. High school students also show interest in the mechanism (within the framework of the “Individual project” subject). The guys and I are working on creating interactive models. “

In addition to the Logitarium, the Technology block has virtual laboratories dedicated to the construction of logic circuits (for schoolchildren studying modern electronic equipment and circuitry) and the use of microcontrollers. There is also a laboratory “Modeling robots”, which allows you to master the basics of robotics, design and program your own mobile, industrial or service robot.

Five programming languages ​​and nearly 300 tests

Starting this academic year, a virtual computer science laboratory has been opened for students in grades 7-11. This is a huge base for deepening knowledge and preparing for exams and olympiads: the laboratory includes 290 ready-made tests, more than nine thousand assignments and over 250 programming courses.

The laboratory covers topics such as information technology, mathematical foundations of computer science, programming fundamentals, basic and advanced algorithms.

“There are tasks of various levels – from basic to advanced. It all starts with the basics. There are five programming languages: C #, C ++, Python, Pascal, Java. Accordingly, the child chooses one of them, and he is given tasks, starting with the simplest ones. There are small training videos, descriptions for tasks, and the child completes them: he writes some code on his own or changes the already prepared code and sends it for review. The program makes tests of the code and gives the result, how correctly he completed the task, ”explains Igor Linkov, a computer science teacher at school # 1539.

Pupils complete the tasks of the virtual laboratory both in the classroom, together with the teacher, and independently at home. It is important that if a child misses a lesson, he can, thanks to the laboratory, master the missed material.

In the near future, teachers will be able to attach laboratory materials to digital homework assignments in an electronic journal. Students see them in the “Homework” section of the electronic diary and follow the link to complete them. Another useful option for children is the ability to view the statistics of their results: the time spent on completing the assignment, correct and incorrect answers, the percentage of correctly completed assignments.

“In general, virtual laboratories are a very good thing, we lacked such a resource. It is important that they continue to evolve. As for my subject, computer science, I would like to see a simulation laboratory in the future. This is the creation of 3D models in specialized programs and the ability to print these models on a 3D printer, ”adds Igor Linkov.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and or sentence structure not be perfect.

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