Last school year, a group of Indiana Area Senior High School teachers met with Dr. Eric Lauber and started to explore the possibilities for learning through VR headsets. While the group was intrigued by the idea, the particular Meta headsets they examined were not designed for the kinds of educational purposes for which the team was hoping to use them, and the ability for teachers to control the equipment was quite limited.
Undeterred, IHS biology teacher Joy Dress continued to explore other options for introducing VR and augmented reality as a learning tool. At a Pennsylvania Institute for Instructional Coaching (PIIC) training session last year, she had the opportunity to talk to coaches from other school districts who were also exploring the use of VR. Through those contacts, she arranged a meeting with a sales representative from ClassVR.
The ClassVR platform and headsets are specifically designed for use in educational settings, and there are a wide range of content tracks to explore. The teacher controls are helpful for delivering and viewing the tracks as students are exploring, and the ability for a teacher to easily direct and monitor students’ attention will help to maximize student learning.
Dress and the district’s technology coordinator, Randy O’Neal, met with a ClassVR representative over the summer, and the Board of School Directors agreed to purchase a class set and site license. The equipment arrived, and last week the team participated in their first training with ClassVR trainers.The team will share their newfound knowledge with their respective departments soon with a goal of having students using the new equipment as soon as possible to increase student engagement through exciting, immersive lessons. Stay tuned!