Second Life - click on boxes and explore before doing anything else.
Second Life Blog - Be sure to click on the "What is Second Life" link in the top left.
Here is a very useful (or overwhelming) quick start list of how to issue commands in Second Life to get your avatar to do things. Two points are that there are lots of interesting things to see and do in Second Life and second there is almost always some sort of help to move you along.
Second Life Support Center - look at the "Second Life for Beginners".
Online safety in Second Life. This site gives a lot of very useful and reassuring information. Although I do not intend to spend real money in Second Life, the safety tips on how not to get scammed are very interesting. second Life is a lot like 1st life. :-)
Second Life is for adults 18 and older. Teen Second Life is for teenagers 13 to 17. so you will learn inf Second Life and then help your students learn in Teen Second Life. There are other virtual worlds for pre-teens.
If you really do not think Second Life has anything to do with education try this link to Education in Second Life. Notice the research links.
SLurl - location-based linking in Second Life. Often you will be invited to attend n event in Second Life at a certain location. Usually the location is given to you as a URL. this site helps explain that a little.
HOW (from others)
There really is more information about Second Life than anyone person can read, but click on this link and follow the links in the article to find out a lot from expert Joe Sanchez.
Another how to post. This one by Cool Cat Teacher--very good. She has several lists of things to do and she gives you a running dialogue of her first day in Second Life.
SciLands Classroom - a series of courses and support materials that help you understand how to operate (walk, sit, etc.) in Second Life. You do not have to do all the activities to get a good handle on things, but try some of the links.
In case you want to go to a conference discussing virtual worlds and education follow this link.
Second Life - What Is The Hype? a post about a year old that gives a good introduction. Be sure to concentrate on the second half of the post. It is about education and Second Life.
Several good posts by Hey Jude give a perspective about Second Life that is worth the read. If you are just skimming, enjoy Judy's costume changes in Second Life.
Suffern Middle School in Second Life - This is a whole blog devoted to "A running account of the proposal, acquisition, development, and implementation of the virtual presence of Ramapo Central School District on the Teen Grid of Second Life" by Librarian Peggy Sheehy.
Practical example--book club in Second Life
This link goes to a short post by Stephen's Lighthouse. The second half talks about the success of a Library in Second Life.
3 Free Online Virtual Worlds
Now, join a virtual world, name an avatar, learn to walk and sit and talk and then explore. Report back on your blog what possibilities virtual worlds might offer our students.
Learn from my explorations:
When I created my account I was a little confused about the name. I chose to use my real first name. When I did so, a button popped up that said "Change first name". I thought that meant I HAD to change my first name. In fact it did not. I should have figured it out because the last name selection was ready for me to choose a last name.
The recommendation is to choose a community in which to start. There are about nine screens of communities from which to choose (scroll down to see the nine boxes). I think the English language communities run out after about 3 screens. I was torn between the first (Hobos) and the university one (Camus in 3d) and the DC Community (Yosemite National Park).
Next you will need to check your e-mail for a message from Second Life. Save the e-mail. Then you will need to download software to your computer. It is about 70 megs of software. I put it in the default suggested place.
It is fun. I still have not learned many things, but I can find a Library and sit down and relax. by the way, if you see me in Second Life, I am Barry Bigboots. The second time you go into Second Life, you will need to open up the Second Life software that you downloaded onto your computer, then type in your Second Life name and password. If you can, find someone you know that has been in Second Life to take you in and show you things. It really is fun. You can see inside a tsunami, a cell, a volcano etc... If you want to download the Second Life software to a second computer, go to this link. I hope you survive your awkward moments in Second Life. I some how lost my Movement Controls. While I was looking for them someone came up behind me and said "hello". Without my Movement Controls I could not turn around. I kept looking for my Movement Controls and she said "oh" and left. Finally I found my Movement Controls in the Tool bar under "view". Then I walked over to her and explained why I had not said anything. I left shortly thereafter.
Here are some place to go to (click on the search box at the bottom and type these in, then click on them and then click on the teleport button--easier than it sounds):
Texas Library Association (not a place but a group to join)
American Library Association
NOAA Virtual Island