Investigation on Virtual Reality

VR in Science Education


Group Project by Erica Holmsen, Brandy Luce,
Alek Walker, and  Sarah Welsh


The Bee Life VR app studies the relationship between plants and their pollinators through the perspective of a bee. Apiology or the study of bees allow us to explore bee behavior, social structure, and hives. It also presents the opportunity to look at how bees use plants and how plants use bees for survival. This app studies the overarching topic of biology and overlaps with study of biotic, agriculture and ecology.

The Bee life app will be used in Google Cardboard as a tool that allows students to explore what they have learned in class. The imaginative role-play encourages curiosity and interest in the subject matter and how things work in the natural world.

Some activities they can explore in this environment as a bee will be finding flowers with nectar, identifying parts of a flower to collect the nectar, and observe the process of pollination during the process of collecting nectar and flying back to hive.



Self initiated learning by moving through environment and through the day in the life of a bee using knowledge attained in the classroom as reference.


Explore biology of plant by trial and error of finding nectar.


Challenge to collect food with limitations of vision, range, and supply.


Discover the magic of pollination and it’s effects on the environment.

Bee Selection

Explore the world as different bees to understand their role in the bee colony and ecosystem.


Types of Bees:


Forager Bee – Collects pollen and nectar from flowers and trees to bring back to the hive, pollinating flowers and plants on their journey.

Guard Bee – Stationed at the front entrance of hive, protects from predators such as robber. bees or wasps.


House Bee – Takes nectar from forager and puts in honey sac to create honey.


Drone Bee – Mate with Queen bee for reproduction then is kicked out in winter to die.

Scout Bee – Ventures outside of hive to look for cavities to live in and relays message to hive.


Queen Bee – Used for reproduction and maintain hive temperature.

Scouting Flowers


Scouts out flowers using senses like sight and smell, also uses electromagnetic field.

  • Color limitations, bees can not see red

  • Sensing positive and negative charges

  • Toggle between human vision and bee vision to see how colors are brighter, streams of scents, electromagnetic fields


Collecting Nectar


Collect nectar/pollen and introducing the anatomy of the flower.

  • Identifying healthy flowers or different types of flowers.

  • How they collect the pollen from which parts of the flower.


Navigation and Flight


Navigation and flight patterns used to collect pollen from multiple flowers.

  • Fighting predators on journey.

  • Have a maximum distance they can travel from hive.

  • Have a capacity limit on amount of pollen that can be collected.




Pollination as a result of bee collecting nectar/pollen.

  • Pollen gets stuck to bee when they rub against stamens when getting nectar at base of petals.

  • As they move to another flower to feed the pollen can rub off onto the new plant’s stigma.



Use of trigger for forward flight movement and head movement for direction of bee. Bee movement code:



















Use of eye focus for selection of flower and parts of flower. Bee focus code:












Use of trigger to collect nectar with tongue.

Nectar collection code:

Future Exploration

Explore the Hive as a Guard Bee, Drone Bee, or Queen Bee.

  • Learn about the hive and types of bees that work in the hive.

  • Explore the layout and structure of a hive and maintenance of maintaining temperature of hive.

  • Discover the process of making and transferring of honey and what the bees use the honey for.

  • Understand the hierarchy of bee social structure.

Work together with other bees to explore environment.

  • Play and interact with other players to discover new functions.

  • Fly to new areas of terrain and explore different types of flowers.

  • Travel to other hives and compare the differences between colonies.

  • Shadow other bees in the hive to observe their tasks and behaviors.

Create alternative functions that allow for different levels of learners.

  • Choose amount of freedom for exploration.

  • Choose from two modes of free flying exploration or select and automatically fly to destination.

  • Turn on user assistance.

  • Use UI to assist in exploring and identifying terrain and objects to allow for younger students to easily use.

  • Change views from bee view to normal view.

  • See the difference between how humans experience nature in comparison to bees (focus on difference in colors, scents, and electromagnetic field).


How can an app support Biology classes by encouraging students to use their knowledge of plant biology?


How can play be used to support students' curiosity and interest in the features of objects and living things?


How can new experiences through different media engage in imaginative role-play?

Key Questions


What color of flowers are bees attracted to?

What senses do bees use to find food?

Do bees have any limitations?

What happens when bees collect food?

What parts of the flower to bees get food?

How do the bees collect the food?

Why are bees important?

How does pollination work?

How do bees help agriculture?

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