Brian Uphoff

Darshan Bhatt

Peter Malcolm

Alessandro Gnoli

Brenda Lopez Silva

Joel Brown

Tom Moher


WallCology is a computer simulation designed to support elementary and middle school curricular goals in life science and population ecology. WallCology situates students within a complex virtual ecosystem, where they may conduct investigations focusing on topics such as the identification and classification of species, habitat selection, population estimation, food chains, predator-prey relationships, life cycle phases, adaptation, and response to environmental change. Multiple tablet computers adjacent to the walls of classrooms serve as viewports (“WallScopes”) into an imaginary space inside the walls filled with the virtual fauna. Through the WallScopes, students see distinctive local virtual environments containing pipes, lath, and animated creatures of various species reflecting distinguishing morphologies, movement behaviors, and habitat preferences. The simulation runs continuously, concurrent with regular classroom day-to-day activities, but becomes the center of attention as inquiry activities, such as the building of field guides based on observations of phenomena or collectively estimating populations, are undertaken by the students.