Looking for ideas? Middle School Computer Lessons

Posts tagged ‘middle school computer lessons; technology conferences’

Computer Curriculum,Middle School Computer Lessons, High School Computer Lessons

Are you looking for a curriculum for your Computer or Technology class? MSCL Publishing has just what you are looking for. Curriculums designed for beginner or experienced teachers in mind. The lessons are complete with student and teacher instructions, worksheets and rubrics, everything you need to create a successful computer program in your school The lessons work with any version of Office or Google docs and are project based. To request a few free samples to see what it is all about visit. www.middleschoolcomputerlessons.com 

Computer Curriculum,Middle School Computer Lessons, High School Computer Lessons

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Middle School Computer Lessons, Office tools in the classroom: What is the best choice?

Middle School Computer Lessons, Office tools in the classroom: What is the best choice?

Does your school use Office (probably the 2003 version) or Office 360, maybe Google Docs? What one is the best choice for the schools of today? More importantly, how will you adjust your instruction to whatever tools you have. The lessons at www.middleschoolcomputerlessons.com are presented in a way so that they can be used with any office or office type program PC, or Mac, Microsoft or Google.

Also, you will need to consider what devices will the students use. Do you have desktop pc’s? Netbooks? Tablets? or do they bring their own? Given the choice I feel that Google docs is the best option, it can easily be used on any device at school or at home. It makes collaboration easy and it is free.

If you are looking for middle school computer lessons or simple high school computer lessons visit www.middleschoolcomputerlessons.com and request 2 free sample lessons from the Complete Computer curriculum.

Twitter: @mprezios

 

Apple Factory Lesson; Middle School Computer Lessons

Apple Factory Lesson; Middle School Computer Lessons

There was recently a story on ABC news about the factory in China that produces iPods, iPods and other apple products. It is less than 20 minutes long and my class was glued to it like it was ICarley. This video shows the lives of the factory workers inside and outside of its walls.

A few things really stood out to me, like how most of my kids could not believe that iPods were made in china. Despite it saying on all Apple products “Designed in California made in China”, the majority of them thought they were made here.

Another thing was how most of the workers at the factory had never seen the finished product. They had never held an iPad before, despite working on them 12 hours a day and living at the factory. That is an interesting concept for kids to wrap their heads around. I told them it was like you work at McDonald’s but never ate the food.

After the video and a brief discussion I asked them to write about the following questions:

1. What are 3 reasons Chinese people want to work in the Apple factory?          2. What are 3 reasons someone would not want to work at the Apple factory?3. Would you want to work in the factory that makes Apple products? Explain why or why not in at least one paragraph.

I would love to hear your comments!

For more ideas visit www.middleschoolcomputerlessons.com

“The Power of ICU” book by Educator Danny Hill; Middle School Computer Lessons

“The Power of ICU” book by Educator Danny Hill; Middle School Computer Lessons

Today I had the pleasure to hear the ideas and experiences of educator Danny Hill author of “The Power of ICU”. This is a dynamic idea where the end result is students taking responsibility for their learning. In a nut shell, teachers no longer accept students taking a zero for a grade. Instead all students complete all the assignments. I must admit that I had read his book before attending the presentation and already wanted to be a part of bringing this to my building. However, after sitting in on Mr. Hills talk, I am ready to dive in and do what ever I have to do to in order to make this work in my middle school. The question that I keep asking myself is “Don’t I want to be part of a great school?”. Well, I really do and I feel that this is the concept that can take us there.

Why not? Does our current zero based grading system really reflect learning…nope. So, why not attack it from a different angle. Lets hold those apathetic kids accountable for the work that they refuse to do. After all, what are we really teaching our kids in our classroom? If you dont pay your taxes, do you get a zero? No, you are forced to pay them one way or another. How is giving a zero or taking points away teaching responsibility?

I suggest that anyone (Even tech teachers) take a look at the book “The Power of ICU by Danny Hill”. As a tech teacher and tech support person in my district I will be a leader in implementing this in my school by helping to set up, maintain and sharpen a Google Docs spreadsheet with a list of every student in my building and any missing assignment they may have. This is just the beginning, I am hoping this will lead my building onto a path where we are proud of the students we produce.

I hope I have many future posts about my experiences with this philosophy. My biggest fear is that the rest of the staff not fully committing to it.

I would love to hear your comments!

For more middle school computer lessons and ideas check out www.middleschoolcomputerlessons.com

Middle School Computer Lessons; Google Earth Scavenger Hunt

Middle School Computer Lessons; Google Earth Scavenger Hunt

If you are looking for an interesting way to introduce Google Earth to your students, I have an activity for you. This this activity is good for about 3 class periods.

During the first class, I like to introduce Google Earth (GE) to the class by a little class discussion to see who is familiar with it. I find about half of younger students have never heard of it. Either way, I will show the location of our school then introduce some of the basic tools. I give the rest of the period as a day to “Explore” GE. I ask them to find the school, their house and at least one other place and add place marks to them. Towards the end of class we will discuss some interesting things that they have discovered.

I use the iPad in my class by showing them GE on it and then having a few students travel down the hallway with it and they can observe the little blue dot move as they move in the building. (This is pretty popular with my students). Your building would have to be wireless for this to work.

The next day I pair up my students and hand out my GE Scavenger hunt. It includes Questions that you need GE to answer and a rubric for them to write their answers on. I total up the points when they are finished, It takes 1-2 class periods. This can get pretty competitive, my classes love this activity and it makes them use GE as a tool in ways that they may not have thought of before. During this activity, my role is to guide the pairs of students as needed. I don’t give answers, only clues.

Google earth scavenger Hunt & Rubric

 For more Middle School Computer Lessons and ideas visit:  www.middleschoolcomputerlessons.com  and for 2 more free sample lessons email support@middleschoolcomputerlessons.com

Middle School Computer Lessons; 3 Best Classroom Tools

Middle School Computer Lessons; 3 Best Classroom Tools

Teaching in a Middle School Computer class can be challenging. Dealing with things like getting 25 computers working at the same time while adding 25 pre-teens into the mix can be quite a task. I find these three tools most useful in my experience.

1. Projector with remote– Most remotes will give you a “Freeze” option. This will freeze the projector screen while you can still use the pc screen without letting the class see what you are doing. You can be preparing the next lesson while the directions for the current assignment are still up.

2. Bluetooth Keyboard and Mouse– Wireless slate…nope. I had a slate for years, the fancy one too and I find that a bluetooth mouse is way better. I can move around the room and control the pc that is connected to the computer. I can also pass around the mouse to students when I teach. Or even just use it as a clicker when showing a powerpoint. The keyboard can be passed around the class too, typing is difficult or impossible with a slate.

3. Laser pointer This can be used on your screen or flash it on a student’s pc when they need to focus on the task at hand instead of disturbing a quiet class to get a student to get on the home row.

I would love to hear your comments and ideas.

For more ideas for the technology classroom visit: www.middleschoolcomputerlessons.com

Middle School Computer Lessons; Future of Tech Education

Middle School Computer Lessons; Future of Tech Education?

With all the new technology coming out these days, where are we heading for the future in technology (Computer) classes in K-12 schools? Every time I attend a tech meeting inside my district or on a bigger stage, I feel overwhelmed about what is going on in the field.

Is it Ipod touch carts? Ipad carts? 1 on 1 computing? BYOD (Bring your own device?) or is it a combo? Where does traditional desktop computing fit in? The future is wide open and I feel teachers need a shared vision with their school district as to what direction they want to go.

With all that being said, I feel that basic computer classes for grades K through 12 is a vital need. Teaching things like basic word processing, keyboarding, spreadsheets, presentation tools, web skills and the like are aspects that all young learners may not get through using their personal devices. Computer classes need to fill in those gaps for kids.

Just because a kid may be able to post on facebook, download an app or play angry birds does not mean that they are proficient in basic computer skills.

If you are looking for materials for your computer classroom that teaches skills like MS Office, Web 2.0, and more check out www.middleschoolcomputerlessons.com

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