Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Week 11, 2009-2010

The laptops continue to be very popular with the upper grade classrooms. Mr. Ramirez, Mr. Devore and Mrs. Saldivar used the laptops this week to type up personal narratives as well as biographies for their author's reports. Observations of students using the laptops has highlighted the need for keyboarding instruction and practice. All students are urged to practice their keyboarding skills over the break. There are some excellent, free sites on the internet that offer keyboarding instruction as well as games for reinforcement. Two of my favorite sites are: Dance Mat Typing and Free Typing Games. Both sites are geared toward children and offer lessons as well plenty of practice opportunities.

As far as activity in the computer lab, Grade 1 students finished their very first Microsoft Word project. For the project, students typed and formatted a Snowman Poem. As part of this exercise, students learned the following: opening, closing and saving Microsoft Word documents, importing clipart, changing fonts and many other skills. For a first attempt at using Word, students did great. We will continue to reinforce this skill throughout the year.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Week 10, 2009-2010

The laptop carts were fully utilized this week in the upper grade classrooms. Mr. Devore's class typed "letters to the editor" and worked on their Explorer's Powerpoint presentations. Ms. Saldivar's class and Ms. Randi's class typed their literary essays. All fourth grade students researched polar bear facts as part of Ms. Isom's Science Rotation and began creating a fact sheet of their findings.

In addition to classroom laptop cart usage, students in Grade 1 were introduced to Microsoft Word in their weekly computer lab rotation. Students typed simple words and learned about the space bar, changing the font size, use of the enter key and more.