On Monday, Travis Harris of SOL REPUBLIC visited Western Oregon University to donate ten Decks to ASSETT. Travis was welcomed by College of Education Dean Mark Girod and ASSETT members Elayne Kuletz, Nathan Sauer, Kimber Townsend, and Gregory Zobel. Harris spent several minutes showing the Decks’ features, including the ability to act as a Bluetooth-connected speaker for phone calls, a mobile speaker for use inside or outside, and a speaker that up to five people can share control of for sharing playlists. SOL REPUBLIC’s donation to ASSETT is valued at $2,000.
ASSETT plans to use the decks for several purposes. First, area teachers Tyler Ciscell, Dean Deters, and Natalie Clark will each have a Deck for testing out with their local classes. After they have had time to test out the Decks, try some lessons, and develop activities, they will share back their discoveries through ASSETT. Second, two WOU instructors, Marcus Wenzel and Bill Hamlin, who teach a pre-licensure class that focuses on educational technology plan to try out the Deck in their classes. They will test out the Deck as a teaching tool as well as a way for students to work with fitting new technology in their lessons. Third, Ben Hays, a para-educator working in Corvallis, will explore how the Deck can be integrated in 1-to-1 iPad classrooms like those in Corvallis. Finally, Kimber Townsend, Elayne Kuletz, and Mary Bucy will test out the Deck in adult education workshops and trainings over the next couple months.
ASSETT will publish our researchers’ and teachers’ findings, ideas, and–hopefully!–videos and pictures here. Eventually, we will have a presentation in Spring or Fall 2015 that synthesizes the different strands of our work with the Deck.