Gwinnett Libraries Bring Learning Alive
Gwinnett County Public Library is the first branch-wide library system in the U.S. to rollout Learning alive™, an augmented reality-based reading and math learning kit.
By Gwinnett County Public Library Staff
Thanks to a generous donation from the Atlanta Retailers Association (ARA) that was matched by the Community Foundation for Northeast Georgia, Alive Studios has equipped all 15 Gwinnett County Public Library branches with its evidence-based Learning alive™ kits.
Alive Studios is a Gwinnett-based software developer that creates mind-boggling learning experiences to increase student engagement and improve early literacy. Students are motivated and inspired as they interact with 26 virtual zoo animals while learning the essential fundamentals of reading and math. Alive Studios’ programs use a technology called augmented reality (3D without glasses) to bring lessons to life. The learning kits are currently being used in more than 3,500 classrooms around the country.
“We’re very excited to be the first public library in the country to roll out this program,” said Shelly Schwerzler, the development manager at Gwinnett County Public Library. The library system plans to make this highly engaging learning experience available to children all around Gwinnett. “Our youth services team will be incorporating this new way to learn about letters, words, and sentences into our existing early literacy programs,” Schwerzler added.
The Learning alive Plus kit includes 26 letter cards, 97 sight-word cards, and 84 word-family cards. Each card is interactive and triggers multiple 3D animations depending on the word or sentence that is created. While learning to identify and sound out each letter, children are able to hear, see, touch, build, and speak throughout the lesson.
This multimodal approach appeals to a broad range of learning styles and abilities, increases long-term retention, and is especially effective with at-risk students and English language learners. Also included are three Interactive Stories and a full, supplemental math program aligned to state standards for kindergarten.
“We are so thrilled to partner with Gwinnett County Public Library and have Learning alive available to so many children around Gwinnett,” said Cynthia Kaye, Alive Studios’ CEO and Chief Zoo Keeper. “What a generous gift from the ARA and Community Foundation!”
Library staff installed the learning kits during the summer of 2018 and received training on how best to use the reading and math supplemental curricula within their programs. “We will be using an online assessment tool to monitor the program’s effectiveness and to help us provide the best service for our community,” said Schwerzler.