Common Sense


AR and VR Games and Apps for Learning

Augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) games and apps can help extend what we see in the classroom or bring the outside world in. Whether students are watching videos of current events or manipulating interactive models, AR and VR can add an extra layer of depth to lessons. As students play, watch, and create, they'll be walking in other people's shoes and may begin to develop empathy in the process. There's so much potential here for creative ways to build social and emotional skills through content learning in math, science, literature, history, and more. Check out our picks below to find immersive worlds, 3D models, and tools to create your own AR and VR experiences in the classroom.

Continue reading

Top Picks


PrintPrint | Save as PDF

Quiver - 3D Coloring App

Augmented reality app adds some interactivity and learning to coloring

Bottom line: This can make a great occasional lesson supplement, but ultimately the lack of customization and light learning hold it back.


Plant life cycle app has detailed AR but little help

Bottom line: This inexpensive plant life cycle app is a fun way to get up close and personal with plant processes, but needs an accompanying lesson for context.

3DBear AR

3D design and augmented reality merge in creative, interactive app

Bottom line: A great fit for classroom or makerspace settings as long as students have clear direction and compatible devices.

Lifeliqe VR Museum

Amazing 3D models for schools with high-end VR capability only

Bottom line: While the non-VR Lifeliqe content may be more practical, Lifeliqe VR Museum is a worthy add-on.

Common Sense Selection


Engage and assess students with media, videos, and interactive slides

Bottom line: This is a great tool with a vast content library, and the teacher- or student-paced learning can unlock the potential of 1-to-1 environments.

Boxcar AR

Augmented reality adds wow factor to reading, but has missing pieces

Bottom line: It's a compelling twist on traditional reading for teachers looking for an interesting alternative, but it presents some tracking challenges and might lead to less actual reading.


Interactive AR stories inspire wonder but need a teacher's touch

Bottom line: Watching the stories unfold around you is just plain fun, even if most of the stories themselves need some scaffolding to work in classrooms.

Apollo 11 VR

Thrilling VR experience needs creative teaching to truly soar

Bottom line: If infused with good teaching, this cinematic experience can provide a rich, unforgettable adventure.

Civilisations AR

Nifty app gives students up-close access to historical treasures

Bottom line: This is an undeniably cool app that encourages connection and curiosity, but without teacher support, student learning will be superficial.


Gorgeous frog anatomy app provides realism without depth

Bottom line: Students can closely examine a frog's anatomy and life cycle in a gorgeous, clean, and reusable way, but teachers will need to supplement the app for a complete lesson.

Google Earth VR

Explore the world with an incredible new perspective and sense of scale

Bottom line: An amazing experience that brings the world to life, despite the heavy investment in VR required.


Break down concepts in a new way with AR models

Bottom line: These 3D STEM models will certainly engage students when added to lessons, but usefulness is limited by a lack of creation options.

Kai's Clan

Innovative STEAM package takes robot coding to the next level

Bottom line: A nearly perfect spin on STEAM coding that combines a bunch of technologies into one, and effectively fuses the real and virtual worlds.


Virtual tour library and creation site has limited classroom utility

Bottom line: Tours have some potential for experiential learning, but the consumer focus means it'll take more work to find them and integrate them in the classroom.

Seek Education

3D modeling and augmented reality offer new dimensions to learning in many subject areas.

Bottom line: The augmented reality and models can bring more abstract lessons to life when surrounded by some context.

Common Sense Selection

Sky Guide

Awesome astronomy app takes students on a journey through the universe

Bottom line: A quality, affordable way to bring true astronomy study to the classroom, even during the day, with a plethora of viewing options.

WWF Free Rivers

Gorgeous ecology AR model is simple but compelling

Bottom line: The free price tag makes this app a no-brainer for including in any lesson on water resources, though teachers will still need to provide context.

Arloon Geometry

Cool exploration features, so-so quizzes teach kids about shapes

Bottom line: A nice way for kids to interactively explore three-dimensional shapes, but built-in quizzes have limited impact.

Common Sense Selection

CoSpaces Edu

Impressive AR/VR creation tool with lots of lesson plans and possibilities.

Bottom line: With a little learning up-front, this tool is a great choice for creative collaboration and projects.


Ambitious augmented-reality tool engages users, promotes coding skills

Bottom line: This dynamic tool allows users to create and experience augmented-reality activities while learning 21st-century skills.

Arloon Anatomy

Explore the human body from the inside out

Bottom line: An interactive 3-D simulation that lets kids dive into the human body and learn about how it works along the way.


Immersive virtual exhibit tool is attractive and versatile but fussy

Bottom line: For teachers and students who can invest the time, Artsteps provides a compelling, free option for presenting and exploring images and audio of any kind.

MEL Chemistry

Free app simplifies traditional chemistry experiments

Bottom line: Go step by step through experiments, supported by videos and 3D visuals.

Virtual Robotics Toolkit

Supplement your Lego robotics program with solid simulator

Bottom line: Virtual Robotics Toolkit can up your game by providing useful data as you test code and explore challenges virtually.

HoloLAB Champions

Immerse students in a fantastic VR chemistry lab

Bottom line: Students can safely experiment, play, fail, succeed, and learn in this engrossing virtual chemistry lab.

Get tips for using these tools in the classroom

See related resources