# Explorelearning (Gizmos): Simulations that power inquiry and understanding

http://www.explorelearning.com/ Gizmos has over 450 highly interactive online simulations, cover nearly every topic in math and science. It is correlated to state curriculum standards, the common core standards, NGSS, and over 300 textbooks. Their research shows Gizmos has improved instruction in 1200 districts and in 46 countries around the world.

High Leverage Practices
Supporting students in application and inquiry http://www.learner.org/courses/envsci/interactives/index.php This site has five interactive labs about different topics in ecology. They cover content of carbon cycle, demographics, diseases, ecosystem and energy. All these five labs involve a part of the high leverage practice of supporting students in application and inquiry. Assessing Understanding http://www.explorelearning.com/ This site is a great resource to use that helps to assess students’ understanding of math and science topics in grades 3-12. Teachers and students themselves can use this resource to assess how well the students have understood the contents and what areas still need more study. The leading class discussion guide http://writing.colostate.edu/guides/teaching/discussions/index.cfm It is a website constructed by the Writing Studio at Colorado State University. Although their focus is mainly on writing, they provide advice on how to facilitate effective class discussion and how to assess student understanding during discussion.

Next Generation Science Standards
Objective 1. MS-LS4-4. Construct an explanation based on evidence that describes how genetic variations of traits in a population increase some individuals’ probability of surviving and reproducing in a specific environment. Evolution: Mutation and Selection: http://www.explorelearning.com/index.cfm?method=cResource.dspView&ResourceID=554

Observe evolution in a fictional population of bugs. Students can modify the rate of mutation and environment to see how a species’ fitness can change over time as it becomes better adapted to its environment. Objective 2. MS-LS1-2 Develop and use a model to describe the function of a cell as a whole and ways parts of cells contribute to the function Cell Membrane: Just Passing Through http://www.pbslearningmedia.org/resource/tdc02.sci.life.cell.membraneweb/cell-membrane-justpassing-through/ This website allows students to play an animation to explore passive and active transport through the cell membrane with example molecules. Objective 3. MS-LS2-3 Develop a model to describe the cycling of matter and flow of energy among living and nonliving parts of an ecosystem The Carbon Cycle Game: http://www.windows2universe.org/earth/climate/carbon_cycle.html This is an interactive online game where students will travel the carbon cycle. Students will take various roads from the atmosphere to the surface to marine life to plants to soil. During the journey, quiz questions pop out to be answered in order to move on to next location.