Virtual reality coming to WA history department

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Virtual reality coming to WA history department

A Samsung Gear VR headset, one of the headsets the history department is looking at purchasing.

A Samsung Gear VR headset, one of the headsets the history department is looking at purchasing.

Ryan Tracey

A Samsung Gear VR headset, one of the headsets the history department is looking at purchasing.

Ryan Tracey

Ryan Tracey

A Samsung Gear VR headset, one of the headsets the history department is looking at purchasing.

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History teacher Stephen Scully and digital learning teacher Stephanie Gosselin are looking into purchasing VR headsets for the history department in order to give it a visual update. They are planning on implementing this new idea by March.

According to Scully, the history department is exploring this to make the classes more interesting and interactive.

¨We are doing this essentially to foster inquiry, which means to get the kids excited about content by doing hands-on activities that will have a high degree of interest for them. Kids have told us that they want to interact with technology. They tell us every day on their phones. And if we’re listening, then we’ll give them what they want in terms of learning,” Scully said.

Scully has been teaching very differently than other teachers for a long time, and hopes to continue his different style with this purchase.

“Lecture has its place, but in my room it’s definitely not the only way kids should be able to learn. These virtual reality headsets will have a high degree of interest with students and make a real difference with whether or not they want to learn something,” Scully said,

Scully has been using stereoscopes, a late-1800s predecessor for modern virtual reality headsets, for a long time. He plans to use these new virtual reality headsets to show how society has progressed in the last 100 years.

The $3,000 grant for the headsets has been written and approved by the Trustees, so Scully and Gosselin just need to decide on which headsets to buy.

“We hope the history department as a whole benefits from this purchase. This is something that will greatly improve our students’ learning for years to come,” Scully said.