Jaeson Clayborn

Adjunct Professor at Florida International University and Miami Dade College

Butterfly World 1.0 is an adventure game that engages players in exploration and education of dry forest ecosystems. Players interact in an immersive virtual world to learn about relationships between butterflies, plants, and invasive species. Unlike other conservation virtual reality experiences, which rely on passive observations, Butterfly World 1.0 provides an active learning environment. We wish to build knowledge, reawaken latent curiosity, and cultivate empathy for insect and ecosystem conservation.

Alban Delamarre: alban.delamarre@fiu.edu | Jaeson Clayborn: jclay010@fiu.edu

Alban Delamarre, creator of Butterfly World 1.0, testing out the game’s features.

Alban Delamarre, creator of Butterfly World 1.0, testing out the game’s features.

Our present and future goals for Butterfly World 1.0

In Butterfly World 1.0, catch and remove graceful twig ants before they eat too many butterflies.

In Butterfly World 1.0, catch and remove graceful twig ants before they eat too many butterflies.

Living room conservation: a virtual way to engage participants in insect conservation

Abstract

Through interactive gaming, virtual reality applied to butterfly and forest conservation activities can reach a broad audience and initiate a paradigm shift towards coexistence between humans and butterflies under urban settings. Butterfly World 1.0 is a serious game designed to teach players about butterflies and plants in dry forest ecosystems in the Florida Keys (USA). Tasks include butterfly and plant identification and the removal of an invasive ant species. The immersive virtual environment allows players to explore the forest without swarms of mosquitoes and oppressive heat present in the real environment. Rethinking a different way of communicating butterfly conservation and environmental stewardship through gaming, we can reach many who might otherwise remain untouched by traditional education routes. Virtual gaming, designed to educate the player through meaningful tasks and measurable outcomes, presents another avenue for direct knowledge acquisition and passive empathy through direct experiences.

Clayborn J, Delamarre A. 2019. Living room conservation: a virtual way to engage participants in insect conservation. Rethinking Ecology, 4, 31-43.

Read the rest of paper here —> PDF

Interpretative signs on the trails inform players about the flora and fauna in the ecosystem.

Interpretative signs on the trails inform players about the flora and fauna in the ecosystem.

The  lime swallowtail  is one of many butterflies in the game.

The lime swallowtail is one of many butterflies in the game.

hialeah stem day.jpg

STEM Day

North Hialeah Elementary

Butterfly World 1.0: Desktop Version

Education should learn from the positive side of gaming - reward, accomplishment, and fun.
— Sebastian Thrun