I only get my students 45 minutes a week. That’s not enough time to teach computer basics AND necessary keyboard skills. So, I give homework. It’s 45 minutes a week of homework:
If the lesson plans are blurry, click on them for a full size alternative.
Social networks dominated by Facebook now account for 22.7 percent of the hours spent in front of a computer, a leap of 43 percent over last year’s figures.
According to the Neilson Co. report, the shift to social networks for communication caused a precipitous drop in email and instant messaging. Time spent emailing was down 28 percent and instant messaging dropped 15 percent.
If you don’t know what all the social networking stuff is, check out these two YouTube videos. They explain social networking in Plain English.
The question for schools is, how much of this should be let into the education environment. It’s way beyond the internet now. We’re talking about:
- internet access to email
These are all banned at my school. Yet, these are the sites that have kids excited about learning–excited about technology. So what are we doing? We’re cutting off the most effective avenue for keeping students interested in school because we’re afraid of them. (more…)
As a working technology teacher, I get hundreds of questions from parents about their home computers, how to do stuff, how to solve problems. Each Tuesday, I’ll share one of those with you. They’re always brief and always focused. Enjoy!
Q: When I insert my picture, the background isn’t transparent, so it covers everything behind it. I want it see-through. How do I do that? BTW, I’m using Publisher.
A: There are two ways, one simpler than the other. (more…)
This lesson provides an introduction to Excel by creating a timecard. Use a template. Have students fill it out at home thenuse the same template at school. When they add the data, Excel automatically adds, divides, etc. to figure out minutes per week, etc. They’ll have no idea they’re using Excel. Olders can create the template themselves and then fill it in (more…)
Everyone who has used a computer understands the annoying, time-wasting hourglass. You’re trying to perform magic on a deadline and the computer screen pops up with an hourglass that lazily pours sand … for. Ever. You think it’ll continue until Harvard wins the Super Bowl
The computer moves on when it’s ready, with complete disregard for your frustration.
There’s a lesson here. Life includes predictable, spontaneous hourglassing. Patience is the key. We teach our kids that patience is a virtue, but we don’t embrace it as our own. Anger won’t get rid of the hourglass and stress won’t make it go faster. Sit down, relax, check your email if it takes too long.
“All human wisdom is summed up in two words – wait and hope” (Alexandre Dumas)
Here’s a book I think you’d enjoy. I discovered it through a fellow blogger, Yankee Sailor. It’s a testament to the strength America derives from our concept of religious freedom. That’s a freedom we take for granted, but few other nations in the world share that attitude:
The Soft Power Of Religious Freedom
Internet start pages are a great idea for kids. They put everything in one spot that they need to safely surf the net. You can put their favorite websites, as well as photostreams, games, more. (more…)
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Clayton Christensen offers a believable and intuitive approach to fixing our staggering American educational system. In a nutshell: people learn in different ways (no surprise here; it’s a well-documented theory). Teachers too often teach one way (or two or three–the point being, teachers standardize. I understand. I’ve been a teacher most of my life. One of us and many of them in a classroom). His solution: Use 21st century technology and Web 2.0 to individualize lessons to suit needs. (more…)