Thursday, 15 May 2014

May 16, 2014 - Exploring a Few Math and Science Gizmos

Happy Friday everyone!!

Although I frequently bring you new tools and tips on how to use technology in the classroom, this week I have elected to highlight a tool that is frequently being underused by teaching staff.  GIZMOS are online, and iPad compatible, interactive simulations which help to make math and science concepts easier for students to understand.  Funded by the Ministry of Education, Gizmos are available to all Ontario teachers and can be accessed through the Explore Learning website ( as well as via a link on UG2GO (  Each school board has been provided with its own password and it can be accessed by contacting personnel at your individual school board.

Gizmos are interactive simulations designed to help students understand key math and science concepts in a visual and active manner. By clicking on ‘Browse Gizmos” after signing into your account, you are able to search by Academic Standard (further separated by province curriculum), Grade and Topic or by the textbook you are using in class.  Topics range from fractions and 3D shapes to astronomy and physics spanning grades 3 to 12.  These Gizmos can be used as examples in class to demonstrate concepts found in the curriculum, as well you may create a ‘classroom’ where you invite your students with a generated class enrollment code  and they will be allowed to view and practice preselected Gizmos chosen by the teacher. 

Gizmos Lesson Materials include a vocabulary guide, student exploration sheet and answer key in addition to the Gizmo itself.  Further, when you click on the Gizmo tab students are able to complete a brief assessment based upon the work they have done and the results and reports are sent directly to the teacher so they may monitor students learning and progress. The Gizmos actually tailor themselves to the student’s learning patterns and use this information to optimize a student’s learning and potential.  One difficulty I have with the Gizmos is that they are often wordy (especially the vocabulary guides) and may prove to be a challenge to students who struggle with language based activities.

I hope that you will take some time to revisit the Gizmos site (and iPad app) to see if these interactive tools may be of use in your math program.

Past Tech Tidbits posts can be found on the blog at and if you have an idea for a future blog topic, please feel free to pass it along to me.



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