Teacher You Can Count On: Carol Gallagher - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

1/17/04

Teacher You Can Count On: Carol Gallagher

With just some styrofoam peanuts, tin foil, and plastic cups, she can teach her elementary students the laws of thermodynamics -- at least some of it. Carol Gallagher from Hardwick Elementary School is this week's Teacher You Can Count On.

Carol Gallagher's students are trying to keep an ice cube from melting.

"You're engineers today," says Gallagher to her students. "Aren't you? You're coming up with ways to design the best type of refrigerator."

It's a science experiment to teach them about heat and insulation. Joey Alexander describes how he's going to keep his ice cube from melting.

"There's a muffin cup and some newspaper to kind of block it from these lights up here," says Joey.

"I like to teach a lot of hands-on because the majority of students learn things that way," says Gallagher, a teacher at Hardwick Elementary School.

Anything from melting ice cubes to making timelines of Lewis and Clark's expedition, Ms. Gallagher will get the lesson across.

"Things that I can bring them where they're touching and feeling, they seem to, it's more memorable for them," she says.

A sensory experience in learning that makes the students independent learners, not afraid to take risks.

"A lot of the kids when we're working through things, and they're not quite understanding how to do it, if we pick out a hands-on activity, they can see the connection," says Gallagher. "The kids next to them will catch on and they'll say, 'Hey, you need to be doing this,' so the other kids are helping them out. And it's just a discovery process."

One that makes learning fun for the students and Ms. Gallagher.

"I feel special every day when they walk in the room with a smile on their face," she says. "They're great kids and I feel like we have a great time together."

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