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COMPUTER LESSON IDEAS

WORD PROCESSING DRAWING PROGRAMS
My Top Ten List
Creating Symbol Patterns
Map Making with Claris Works 5.0

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My Top Ten List

This is a neat activity that I use with my students once they have learned how to change the font face, size, bold, underline, and use italics. I then use a modification of this activity once  we have covered adding graphics, borders and text art.

Activity: Students are to create a "Top 10 List" of anything that interests them. They should be sure to include their own name in the title for their list. Examples of student ideas have included "Lyndsey's Top Ten Computer Games", "Chris' Top Ten Places in the World to Visit" and "Sarah's Top Ten CD's". All students begin by typing their list, numbering each item as they go. Detail is encouraged (ex. instead of "Toronto" for a place to visit, students could type "Toronto to tour the CN Tower and SkyDome."). Using the skills of changing the font size and face along with those of bolding, underlining and italicizing, the students "decorate" each entry in their list. The final list should be centered and fill the page. The results are exciting and look impressive. My students are always pleased with their lists and enjoy sharing them with their friends. This is also a good activity to repeat once other skills have been taught such as adding graphics, borders and text art. For a Hallowe'en activity I had the students create slightly different version of the "Top Ten List". They created "What I Will See on Hallowe'en Night!". They listed ten things that they thought they might see, following the above directions. Once the list was "decorated", the students added graphics, a border and a fancy text art title. The results were so excellent, that we printed these off using our school colour printer!

- Shayni Tokarczyk

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Creating Symbol Patterns

Here is an activity that integrates your classroom computer with your math program! After teaching students how to insert symbols in a Word Processing Program, challenge them to create patterns using this skill. This is also a good time to practice the copy and paste functions as well, as the students can copy their initial symbols and paste them over and over again to create a long pattern. If you are working in a lab setting here is a fun way to finish this activity - have students get three or four patterns started and then begin to rotate chairs with others in the lab and attempt to continue the other person's pattern. Continue rotating a few times to see how long the patterns get. Students can then return to their computer to see how their friends did with their patterns.

- Shayni Tokarczyk

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Map Making with Claris Works 5.0

Use the drawing program within Claris Works to help your students create maps. I have my students create their own town (they often name it after themselves). Roads are created using the rectangle tool. We use the library (under File) to add graphics. The 'community' section within the library has everything from banks to schools, to homes. Students must create a legend using the text tool that shows their symbols and what each represents. A compass must be added and directions are written for a friend to follow using N, E, S, W. Once your students get used to using the program, teach them how to use the 'free rotate' tool to rotate their cars to go on vertical roads etc. Road signs and interesting areas outside of their town (eg. lakes, campgrounds, mountains) are also added. This is a really fun way to use this simple program. The kids love it!

- Shayni Tokarczyk

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Last Updated on December 21, 2014