Monday, November 19, 2012

Gizmos at Sanborn

One way our class used Gizmos to engage student learning was to have them show their understanding of simple circuits in science.  Students had a BLAST ast making simple circuits and seeing if their creations would light up.  They used the photo function of the Gizmo to take pictures of their custom designed simple circuits.  After playing for awhile, they completed a teacher designed assessment enthusiastically and showed their understanding.  It was a perfect blend of fun and learning!

 Nels Tooker, 4th Grade
D.J. Bakie School, Kingston, NH

The Gizmos my students have used are those aligned with our Everyday Math lessons.  The students have been re-taught concepts they may have struggled with and then use Gizmos to practice the concept independently.  The Gizmos my students have enjoyed are Chocomatic (Multiplication, Arrays, and Area) and Factor Trees (Factoring Numbers).  They also have enjoyed Gizmos during choice time, to play around and get familiar with the website and other Gizmos that are available.

-Nicole Elli, 5th Grade
Memorial Elementary School, Newton, NH

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Laconia School District - Gizmos

Laconia School District - Gizmos

Gizmos have been used in the Laconia School District for a number of years, and are utilized more with each passing year. The visual and manipulative aspects of the Gizmos allow students to see a concept in action and manipulate the simulation at their own speed. Students can talk about the topics while looking at the simulation in action.  This helps them not only with initial understanding, but also with connecting the information with prior knowledge so that they can retain the new information. Which is, after all, the definition of learning.

Student quotes about Gizmos:

“Gizmos helped me see how things worked and went step by step, so it was easier to understand.”

“My favorite thing about science this year was Gizmos!”

“The Gizmos helped me by showing me things we need to see, but can’t do as a lab in class.”

“The Gizmos showed (the topics we were learning about) and made them look less complicated.”

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Gizmo Use at TRS

In grades 5 - 8 all of our math and science teachers are actively using Gizmos as a tech tool in their lessons.  Many teaching models have been employed throughout the building,  students working independently with Gizmos as enrichment, teacher directed lessons for whole classes using the interactive white board and students working through each lesson in a guided practice.

The nice thing with Gizmo is students can take the basic lesson in one of the simulations and then extend that lesson into one of their own.  Teachers love Gizmo because it provides a nice enhancement to their daily lessons.

Here are a few thoughts from students relating to their use of Gizmo...

Friday, September 7, 2012

Gizmos at Fall Mountain

We started our Gizmos with a training that was held at our high school in January. Of course, that was the one sick day that I was out so I missed it. I later did my training in March.

However, we started Gizmos with a small group of core teachers and also the K-8 Library/Media specialist. We focused on using Gizmos for math and science. Kristen Hill, a 3rd and 4th teacher at Sarah Porter School, was our model teacher for using Gizmos. She used them for several subjects, helped teachers to get started and also demonstrated Gizmos at an Alstead area teachers' meeting. Sadly, Kristen has moved to another district so I will be attempting to explain how effective Gizmos are in demonstrating concepts.
Above are a couple preliminary pictures of Gizmos being used with 3rd and 4th graders. 

I was finally able to put this all together and this movie shows our results. The movie speaks for itself. The gizmo that we used was the Growing Plants activity. The goal for the students was to grow a plant by picking a bean and then use virtual water, fertilizer, compost and light to grow the tallest plant. 
What is great about Gizmos is what you don't see: students not participating, staring into space, or being disruptive. Even though the plants are not real, the immediate results encouraged every student to not just participate but to also be excited about their learning.

Selena Garrison
Technology Integration Specialist
Fall Mountain Regional School District

Sunday, August 5, 2012

     In November of 2011 several teachers from our school attended the Gizmo training workshop.  In January and February we trained teachers at our school and taught them how to log onto and use the web site.  We then introduced it to all the third and fourth grade classes through our science enrichment program.  Individual teachers then used it with their classes.  The students enjoyed using the gizmos and quickly learned how to navigate the site.  They used it in their science classes and for math review and reinforcement.  
One particular lesson I used with my class was the Clown Cannon.  After discussing and practicing measurements on paper the students still had difficulty distinguishing between the customary and English measurements.  They also still needed practice on which measurement to use for which lengths.  The gizmo really made it all more concrete for them.  
We also used it to review and reinforce what we learned in our plant unit.  With Gizmos we were able to take what we learned through growing plants in the classroom even further.  They could quickly grow plants and make changes to certain conditions and observe the results.  It truly completed our unit.   
L. Constantine
Pembroke Hill School

Friday, May 11, 2012

Using Interactive Manipulatives in Lebanon School District

What are Gizmos?  Watch this Video

On March 21st our teachers in grades 3-6 were trained by an expert Gizmo trainer on how to set up their class and use Gizmos to help their students learn Science and Math concepts.  We received a Gizmo subscription and expert training through the NH Digital Resources Consortium Grant.  

Here's what teachers in Lebanon, NH are saying about Gizmos

"That was super fun! Gonna try it at noon!" - training feedback

"I love Gizmo! My class is using it now on Monday and Fridays during our mobile lab times in the classroom. Our first adventure is using a line hopper game. We downloaded a hard copy and are recording our answers on them. The kids seem to really like it!" - Grade 3

"I've used Gizmos for both math and science.  The interactive simulations allow for differentiated instruction at it's best as students are able to manipulate the Gizmo in different ways to address their learning needs.  I love it!"  Grade 5

"I just wanted to let you know how much our class LOVES GIZMOS!  They SQUEAL (literally) when I mention the name.  They are eager to go to the lab to explore the newest topic...and the learning is phenomenal!  They "GET" electrical circuits and parallel circuits, and fuses, conductors, and insulators and they got it all from ONE Gizmo!  We've done the plant Gizmo, the electricity gizmo, and rounding, and we're currently working on a symmetry Gizmo.  Thanks for bringing this in to the district!" - Melissa Allen, 4th Grade, Mount Lebanon Elementary School, Lebanon, NH

Video coming soon!