Gizmos and Gadgets

Researching Scootle this week unearthed a great resource for students to learn about human homeostasis – link here to Human Homeostasis at ExploreLearning.

Students use an online simulation (Gizmo) to see what happens when different variables are changed. In this particular resource, the activity relates to human homeostasis, and students aim to maintain a stable internal body temperature while changing variables including exercise, outside temperature, clothing etc.

I have used similar types of interactives before in Physical Education classes and found students were highly motivated to input different variables and see what the resultant effects were. One such standout activity was for learning about golf, and students changed the angle and speed of release, club size, and shaft length to determine how far the golf ball would travel.

When using these types of resources, students can directly see the impact of manipulating variables, as opposed to hearing the teacher talk about it, try and picture it mentally, or look at static images. Learning can thus be more directly meaningful and students are more able to construct an accurate understanding of what is occurring. The resource leads up to an assessment of learning and has a guide to assist students if stuck. Great resources to integrate into a unit of learning.


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