Computer Lab News: Weeks 21-29 – 4th Grade

4th Grade completed their Snow Cinquains and altered snowflakes and these are now shared on the Travel Scrapbook on our wiki. I hope you will take a minute to check these out. They did a great job with the snowflakes and their poetry.

4th Grade also completed the February and March Voices of the World activities. February’s activity was to illustrate and say the months of the year and March’s activity was to illustrate the various locations of the schools participating and say the name of the state and/or country. These are now shared on our Voices of the World page on our wiki. If you haven’t, I would encourage you to visit the Voices of the World Wiki and check out all of the voices participating in this project – it really is amazing!

4th Grade is currently in the middle of a 12 Class Keyboarding Boot Camp. This involves taking a timed test at the beginning of class, completing keyboarding lessons in Mavis Beacon and playing some typing games. These classes are meant to teach proper technique and not to concentrate too much on speed. If your child memorizes the keyboard and learns the correct technique for keyboarding, speed will come. I would encourage you to encourage your child to practice keyboarding at home. As with anything, the more you practice, the better you get. Here are some keyboarding lesson sites they could use at home:

  • – Lessons, Graphs to track progress, typing games. This site requires registration and can be ad free for a $5 one-time donation. You can customize the look of your background and some other features.
  • – 27 lessons. This site requires registration.
  • – This site has lessons, games & speed tests. We often use this site in class to test speed.
  • PowerTyping – Simple typing lessons where you can type to music to encourage rhythmic typing. Records your WPM on each lesson and assigns a grade.
  • Sense-Lang – A simple site with lessons starting with the home row. This site also allows you to paste text from anywhere and practice typing using that text. This is a nice feature since it practices real typing rather than just random words or letter combinations.
  • NimbleFingers – This site has online typing tests and a typing program you can download called Word Wacker. This is a free to try program.
  • E-Learning For Kids – A fun animated course.
  • Dance Mat Typing – Fun Characters and songs to introduce Touch Typing for children 7-11 years old from the BBC.

Computer Lab News: Week 5

KINDERGARTEN: Kindergarten only had computers once this week and spent their day in the lab exploring the educational software program, Jumpstart Kindergarten. They will be using this program throughout the year.

1ST GRADE: 1st Grade had an introduction to Microsoft Word this week in the lab. They first learned about some important keys on the keyboard using a paper keyboard: Space Bar, Caps Lock, Enter and Backspace. Did they bring the paper keyboard home to show you what they had learned? After learning where the important keys were, they went into Word and typed their name multiple times making it bold or italicised or underlined. During their second day in the lab, they once again used Word typing their name again but playing with making it multiple colors and changing the font and font sizes. Most of the students printed out what they had typed. Did you see your child’s rainbow name?

2ND GRADE: 2nd Grade finished their ABC Charts in KidPix. They were then introduced to the collaborative project they will be working on called Online Autumn. They then brainstormed ideas about Autumn using an online tool.

After the brainstorming session, the 2nd graders began creating pictures of the things they like best about Autumn using KidPix.

3RD GRADE: This week in the lab, 3rd Grade finished up their ABC Charts in KidPix and reviewed the parts of the desktop. They then began to work on and All About Me project in KidPix. KidPix is a very fun program with a lot of built in stickers and stamps and special effects but for this project they need to use the basic drawing tools to draw themselves and use the ABC Tool to list some facts about themselves too. When these are complete, your student will be bringing theirs home and we will be displaying them in the computer lab too!

4TH GRADE: This week in the lab, 4th Grade learned all about the collaborative project they will be working on all year called Voices of the World. They were introduced to some of the schools that will be participating using a Live Search Map and then we recorded the class saying “Hello, we are (name of school), from (location) and you are listening to Voices Of The World, Goodbye.” on a Voki:

You can listen to all of the Vokis created on the Voices of the World Wiki. 4th Grade also started creating their All About Me picture in KidPix. Like 3rd Grade they will be drawing a picture of themselves using the standard drawing tools in KidPix and adding at least 8 facts about themselves and decorating this with stamps and stickers as they wish.

5TH GRADE: 5th Grade only had computers once this week and they spent their time working on their All About me pictures in KidPix. Also, a few of the 5th Graders finished up their recording for the Summer Reading VoiceThread.

6TH GRADE: This week in the lab, 6th Grade practiced their keyboarding skills each day. They were introduced to their year-long collaborative project, A Room With a View and some of the classes that will be participating in the project using a Live Search Map. One of the 6th graders will be taking a photo from the same place in front of the Computer Lab each month and another will be recording information about weather, etc. and submitting the photo to the project as well as posting it online. All students in 6th grade also be reflecting on each month with a VoiceThread. We also reviewed the formatting of Science Labs and worked on this during class for anyone with questions. 6th Grade also worked on an All About Me project in Word.

7TH GRADE: 7th Grade only came to the computer lab on one day this week due to the Fall Fund Raiser Assembly on Friday. On that day, they were introduced to their collaborative project Human Genetics: A Worldwide Search for the Dominant Trait and taken on a virtual tour of where the participating schools are located. They also spent some time working on their keyboarding skills in Mavis Beacon.

8TH GRADE: 8th Grade continued to explore the Social Studies Wiki and create their profiles. They will be starting to update the content on the wiki in the 2nd quarter.