Trench Virtual Reality Experience

Published on 13th June 2016 by Phil Birchinall in Curriculum

The Battle of the Somme still stands as the biggest loss of life in a single day in British military history. 19,240 British soldiers were killed as they walked across no man's land towards the enemy positions. Our award winning Inspyro team have accurately recreated a trench of the era, set two days before the battle on 29th June 1916. This was the original date set for the troops to go over the top, however the rain caused the date to be pushed back to the 1st July.

Our Trench VR experience is not designed to teach all the facts of the battle or conditions that soldiers faced. There are many sources for this imformation and most are freely available online, such as the excellent BBC iWonder resource here and British Legion's website, toolkit and app, all available here.

The Trench Experience activity uses the immersive power of virtual reality to allow pupils some idea of what it would be like to stand in a trench on 29th June 1916, in the rain, awaiting the inevitable combat. The accompanying sheets provide background information designed to help build the atmosphere and sense of reality. There is a sound file as well, with the sheets spoken to allow pupils access in different forms.

You will need a Google cardboard headset which are available from numerous sources. We like the 'Eightones' headsets, available from Amazon here. Please make sure that you use headphones, 3D sound has been included to enhance the feeling of reality. Without this, the experience is very much degraded. Tou walk arounf the trench, follow the instruction in the headset. Look out for the trench periscope and listen to 'Anthem for Doomed Youth' by Wilfred Owen.

Download our App for Apple iPhone or iPad touch here or here for the Android version on Google Play.

The ultimate aim is to immerse pupils and create opportunities to write. Alternatively, they could use the fantastic (and free) TouchCast App to green screen to create reports from the front.

We hope you enjoy this free app and resource. Our approach is always to create experiences for pupils that create a desire to learn and create quality work.

Click here to download the supporting materials as a zip file.

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