Thursday, October 28, 2010

Kindergarten Progress

The kindergarten students have been doing a great job in computer class. They now know how to log in to the computers with a username and a password. They can open and close files by clicking on them and pushing the Enter key. Each computer they log off the the computers at the end of class. Most recently students learned to use the backspace key for when they make a mistake on the username or password. We started with a coloring program to practice colors and using the mouse. Classes then moved on to a program that helps them identify letters and sounds. Lately we have been using some programs that cover math concepts. Keep up the good work kindergarteners!

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Color Splash

Another fun app for everyone is Color Splash. It takes a photo and changes it to grayscale. You use the tools to zoom and restore color where you want it. Whatever you decide to recolor is given emphasis and drama against the black and white background. Color Splash is a fun and easy tool. This picture took me less than five minutes to change!

Friday, October 22, 2010

Vote For Us!

Last week Miss Frank read Vote For Duck to the second grade classes. Students made slide shows listing reasons people should vote for them (no mudslinging allowed)! This week they added clip art, used the spell checker (because no one will vote for someone with bad spelling), proofread it themselves (because we are smarter than computers), and shared the shows with the class.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010


A wiki is a collaborative web site that users can modify. To learn about wikis, the fourth grade students are going to contribute to and edit the WikiCES web site.

Monday, October 18, 2010

First Grade Keyboarding

First grade computer students are now using the program Type to Learn, Jr. to practice typing! Each week we will spend 10 minutes practicing using both hands to type, not just one. The left hand will type the pink letters in the program, and the right one types the purple letters. In January we will begin learning to type with fingers on the home row!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Third Grade Internet

The Third Grade students just wrapped up a unit on using the Internet. The classes reviewed how to navigate with links, searches, and using the address bar. Students also completed activities involving Internet safety and evaluating web pages.

Third graders are invited to bring guests to Teach Your Parent Night on Tuesday, October 19, from 5:30 to 7:00 pm in Miss Frank's room, where they can teach their guests all about the Internet.

Now Third grade classes are going to start a four week project. They are going to create slide shows about Michigan! This week they are gathering facts from the Internet using the search skills they learned and the web site Google.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Teachers and Facebook

Facebook is an excellent tool for communicating with parents. Its biggest advantage is that the majority of parents already use it and check it daily. Another advantage is it has built in security and control.

Click here to see a slide show of ways an actual first grade classroom uses Facebook. That teacher signed up for an account. When you create an account it gives you more control over security and privacy through the setting. Also, you control who sees the information by deciding who can be a "Friend" of the account. The other option is to create a page. A page is easier for people to join and you can access it from your personal account. Just try to avoid using last names of students if you do a page and don't use any names with pictures. The red arrows on this picture show you where to click if you want to sign up for an account or create a page.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Student Projects on the Web

Each year I have a student project that goes on the web for each grade. From now on I will post them here on this blog. They will be labeled Projects to make it easy to find all of them at once. Here are the ones from last year:
Here are some fourth grade web pages from previous years:

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Itsy, Bitsy, Spiders!

This week the computer lab is infested with spiders! Second grade classes reviewed drawing tools by making webs and spiders. Students used "Save As" to protect each step in case of a mistake. Otherwise, they would have had to start over with an empty screen.

Monday, October 4, 2010


Back in June of 2007 I read about LibraryThing in a magazine. It was a place on the Internet to catalog your books. It would give you recommendations based on your library, and there were groups to join to discuss books with others. The first 200 books you enter are free. Besides just keeping track of my library, I also keep a list of books I have read and books I want to read. I keep track of the books I use at school, and I use a LibraryThing widget to show those book on the side of this blog. Whether you are a teacher or a parent, I highly recommend checking out this web site. Click here to see my profile page and get an idea of what is possible.