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Computer Literacy

The curriculum is based upon the Massachusetts Technology Literacy Standards. Students in grades 5, 7, and 8 receive instruction in keyboarding, basic computer operations, software applications (for productivity, communication, and problem solving) and Internet research including responsible use of the Internet.

Lower School

Grade 5 Units

Students have Computer Literacy for one semester in fifth grade, meeting once in the six day cycle. They are introduced to proper keyboarding techniques and basic word processing skills (using Microsoft Word).

Additional software programs are used to complete project assignments that begin in the classroom.

The Paint Program
Students create original illustrations for essays or poetry.

Graphing and analyzing data
Student’s record survey data in Graphmaster (or another spreadsheet program), create simple charts, and analyze their results.

PowerPoint Basics
Students create a slideshow presentations related to the science or social studies curriculum. They learn how to modify slide layouts, slide designs, and incorporate basic animation schemes.

Internet Basics
Students learn about correct or acceptable ways (netiquette) of communicating on the Internet.

Upper School

Grade 7 Units

Students have Computer Literacy for one quarter in seventh grade, meeting twice in the six day cycle.

Spreadsheet Basics
Students explore a few ways that spreadsheet software can be used at school, home, and in the workplace and learn how to create, format and import data tables and charts into their presentations. They also learn how to reference cell addresses and perform simple calculations using formulas and functions. At the end of this unit, students complete an occupations webquest and create a presentation that includes data about their selected occupations.

Computer Basics
Students learn about the basic components (hardware) of a computer and how these parts work together in the 3-step information process. (Input-Processing-Output) We also explore an array of storage devices that are available and trace the development of the computer historically. At the end of this unit, students create a timeline of important events related to the development of the computer.

Internet Safety
Students learn some of the hazards of Internet use and how to keep their identity and personal information protected. This unit is a multimedia exploration of current trends in technology use. We will discuss how and why online communication adversely affects teens and what to do if you or someone you know is being negatively impacted. At the end of this unit, students create a Photo story presentation to teach their audience about one aspect of Internet Safety. (Ex. cyber bullying, netiquette, instant messaging, chat rooms, social networking)

Grade 8 Units

Students have Computer Literacy for one semester in eighth grade, meeting twice in the six-day cycle.

Semester Project: Introduction to Web Page Design
Students learn how to create a digital portfolio of their work in the form of a web site. They will learn, explore, and apply some of the basic elements of a well designed website. The web pages will include original digital photographs, project reflections and hypertext links to their digital files.

Advanced Search Strategies
Students learn more about how search engines work and explore different types of search engines and subject directories. They also learn how to get the most out of a search engine using the advanced search option in Google and Boolean operators. At the end of the unit, they create an idea map using Inspiration that details the strategies that were most helpful in refining their searches.

Evaluating Web Sites for Credibility
Students learn the five keys to finding credible sources and how to evaluate a web source to determine its credibility. After practicing this skill, they are assigned a web site to evaluate and present their findings to the class using the SmartBoard.

Programming with Scratch
Students select an Internet Safety topic to research (ex. Identity theft, online predators, computer viruses, netiquette), write a script and create an interactive story using the Scratch object-oriented programming language. This is a collaborative project.