Saturday, August 16, 2014

What We Learned the First Week of School

This was our first week back to school and we jumped right into it in computer lab!  Here's a breakdown of what we learned:

Kindergarten-Every year at this time I have such a renewed admiration for our Kindergarten teachers.      Teaching them how to function at school is not easy!  And teaching them how to use a computer isn't any different.  In this world of smart phones and tablets, many of them have never touched a mouse.  Do you remember the first time you ever used a mouse?  It does take a little time to figure out that coordination.  Needless to say, we spend the first few weeks of school learning how to use a mouse.

This year we watched this YouTube video.  While it was a little silly,  the sticker on the mouse was an "aha" moment for me.  I immediately put stickers on every mouse in the lab.  It seemed to really cut down on the accidental right clicking, screen zooming, crazy things popping up, and everyone screaming for help at the same time madness.

We played  Literacy Center, Bees and Honey, and Make a Face to learn how to move the mouse, click, and click and drag.  We also learned how to navigate to Chrome (at this point we call it a "beach ball") and our school's Symbaloo page to find these websites.

First Grade-Our first graders have been working on reviewing their keyboard skills this week by playing Keyboard Challenge and Keyboard Practice from ABCya.

Second Grade-Our second graders had an "intro to word processing" course this week.  Up until this point, most of what they've done has been web based.  They learned how to navigate through programs and locate MS Word.  We reviewed how to make capital letters, use the space bar, the enter key, etc by typing our names and a sentence.  The learned how to change and resize font.  They loved that part!  They also learned how to insert clip art.  They used a keyboard shortcut to print their papers.  Second grade really practiced a lot of new computer skills this week!

Third-Fifth Grade-  The first couple days of school the kids used Word Clouds for Kids to make word clouds with the names of all their new classmates.  We have spent several days getting all our 3-5 grade students acquainted with Kidblog.  The students loved writing about their summers and some of things they have learned the first week of school.  All the classes are connected on Kidblog, so they can read posts from all their friends and comment on them.  It's been a lot of fun to get to know the kids better through their writing and see how they respond to one another.

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