Award-winning Canning Vale College teacher bringing virtual and augmented reality to the classroom

Crystle Challinger picking up her Australian Training Award last year.
Crystle Challinger picking up her Australian Training Award last year.

CANNING Vale College teacher Crystle Challinger may have been recognised at a national level last year, but she has no plans to rest on her laurels in 2019.

Ms Challinger was named the national Vocational Education and Training (VET) Teacher/Trainer of the Year at the Australian Training Awards late last year.

She was recognised for her innovative use of augmented and virtual reality programs in training and up-skilling fellow teachers for the past two years.

The Bayswater resident, who has been a performing arts teacher for 15 years, said she was excited to be able to start introducing augmented and virtual reality programs to her students this year, to re-create a typical industry environment in school.

“The program I have been using, which is HP Reveal (formerly Aurasma) is all about creating augmented realities through using iPads, so kids are virtually manipulating the space they’re in,” she said.

“I do a lot of digital work, lots of iMovie, we use a virtual lighting program so they can create lighting schemes before they actually run the lights.

“Being able to use augmented reality and virtual reality programs to give the students a little more insight specifically into what the industry would be like is a big step forward.”

Ms Challinger said she aimed to used the technology to encourage kids to mix performing arts with science, technology, engineering and mathematics-orientated concepts.

“I focus on transformative education through STEAM, using the arts and humanities to add the ethical and moral aspects to STEM,” she said.

“You may be able to create these things, but should you, and why do you? That’s the question I ask my kids to critically assess.”