Arkansas Cooperative Brings Online Simulations to Middle Schoolers
The Northwest Arkansas Educational Cooperative is bringing online simulation tools, called "Gizmos," to middle schoolers as part of an effort to increase student proficiency in the areas of math and science.
The Gizmos, provided as a service by ExploreLearning, offer visual, interactive representations of specific STEM concepts (water displacement, Newton's laws of motion, the angles of polygons, etc.) and are designed to align with state math and science curriculum standards. Funding for the implementation was provided by the Arkansas Department of Education through the Enhancing Education Through Technology (EETT) program.
"This is another valuable resource that supports the Total Instructional Alignment Resource Project (TIARP), a joint project of all Arkansas Education Service Cooperatives. Gizmos will give grade 6-8 students across Arkansas the ability to explore, experiment with and visualize math and science concepts as they learn," said Teresa Chance, an assistant director for the Northwest Arkansas Education Service Cooperative and project director for the EETT grant's Gizmo implementation, in a prepared statement.
The Northwest Arkansas Educational Cooperative is made of 16 individual school districts, including Decatur Public Schools, Farmington Public Schools, Bentonville Public Schools, Greenland School District, Gentry Public Schools, Gravette Public Schools, Fayetteville Public Schools, Huntsville School District, Prairie Grove School District, Pea Ridge School District, Lincoln Consolidated School District, Rogers Public Schools, Siloam Springs School District, Elkins Public Schools, Springdale Public Schools, and West Fork Public Schools, along with the Benton County School of Arts.
Dan Thompson is a freelance writer based in Brea, CA. He can be reached here.