Arts Education and Virtual Reality
Free Music Curriculum and 500 VR Headsets Traveling to Under-Resourced K–12 Schools
- By Kate Lucariello
With a $250,000 grant from the Tides Foundation Unity Charitable
Fund, Rotu Entertainment has created the Harmony Program in a
year-long initiative to travel to under-resourced K–12 schools
across the United States to help implement music education. The
company will donate 500 Meta Quest 2 headsets and free licenses to
use its Jam Theory software. A research study will also be conducted
to measure the impact of music education in schools and using VR as a
program is expected to serve over 100,000 students. The goal is to
use VR technology to foster the benefits of music education in
schools, using Jam Theory’s extensive curriculum. The virtual
learning platform accommodates students’ level of musical
knowledge, from simple to advanced concepts, such as polyrhythms,
melodies, and thematic variations. Students can experiment with six
different instruments: piano, drums, base, theremin, synth, and a
mixing station. Rotu plans to add more instruments in the future.
Theory will be available on the Meta Quest 2 with cross-compatibility
on Meta Quest, PCVR, PC, and Mac devices. Teachers can implement the
curriculum remotely for distance learning.
accompanying research study will be conducted by Kerstin Liesenfeld,
founder of the Liesenfeld Research Institute. The study will measure
students' level of music theory retention inside virtual environments
and overall learning experience.
Harmony Program was founded on the principle that quality music
education should be available for everyone,” said Jason Parks, CEO,
Rotu Entertainment. “Understanding music concepts is as essential
as any STEM program as it actively shapes millions of lives including
future leaders of the world.”
Entertainment is an immersive entertainment studio based in Boston.
Its mission is to inspire, entertain, and empower humanity inside and
out of the virtual world, and it has worked with nonprofits for the
past 10 years. Visit
the company’s home page to learn more. See
the Jam Theory page for information about how it
Liesenfeld Institute, an affiliate of Tufts University School of
Public Health and Community Medicine, conducts research on topics
“surrounding the development of the authentic self.” Visit
the institute’s page to learn more.
Kate Lucariello is a former newspaper editor, EAST Lab high school teacher and college English teacher.