8-C

June 15, 2018
45 minutes*


Internet Moment:
  Students should look at eBay.com today.  Most of our students have bought things online and some of them have sold items online.  
  Ebay is a great way for people to get started in internet commerce.  Students should also check out the immigrant story of Pierre Omidyar who founded Ebay.  Next class we will talk about ways students can get involved with buying and selling online.

Basic HTML Tutorial:  Students should try the HTML Tutorial Activity at Khan Academy:


Technology Current Event Video:  We finished class today with a short video about Pierre Omidyar, the creater of eBay.



* Class time was shorter today due to the End of the Year Awards Assembly schedule.









June 13, 2018
104 minutes

Internet Moment
: Today we started class by researching people who are computer coders.  We started by visiting
 Marcos Weskamp's Blog.   He is a self described software architect. He was also part of the team that founded Flipboard which seeks to bring the design experience of magazines to web and tablet technology.  Students also had a chance to search for other famous coders online and Mr. McNulty shared the story of his Great AuntKathleen Antonelli, who was one of the world's first computer programmers.  Students were reminded that all of the digital technology that they experience every day was created by ordinary people.  We also discussed what working in careers that involve technology might be like.  (CRETS:  4a, 4c, 6c, 6d, 7c) (PA BCIT Standards: 15.2.8.B, 15.2.8.C, 15.2.8.D, 15.2.8.E)

Hour of Code:
  Today our class participated in the Hour of Code. We started by viewing the source code for this webpage.  Students were told that this code, a mixture of HTML and JavaScript, was the list of specific instructions that tell your web browser how to display the webpage.  We then watched the tutorial video below to introduce the online coding activity.  Students then went to the online Blockly Moana Tutorial to write JavaScript 

Office Yoga Break:  Students are always reminded to not spend too much time sitting in front of computers.  Breaks should be taken at least every 30-40 minutes.  For our break today we practiced a simple yoga stretch for your back and then everyone had a chance to get up and move around the room some.

https://scratch.mit.edu/help/videos/Introduction to Scratch: As a follow-up to the Blockly Maze Tutorial the class was shown Scratch which is a free online code editor that was developed by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Students who enjoyed using Blockly, were told that Scratch would be the next step for them to try. All students had about 10 minutes to experiment with Scratch and to view some featured student projects. Students were also encouraged to check out the Scratch Tutorial Videos page on their own and consider joining Scratch. We also watched a short video by the MIT Scratch Team about some of their latest developments.

Started Basic HTML: Students learned about computer coding by creating a website in basic HTML (Hypertext Markup Language). Students typed the HTML into Notepad to create a simple webpage. We also worked on changing the background color, the font color and the font style.  Next class we will be inserting images.  Students will also be shown how to embed a youtube video into their page and everyone will have some time to experiment with adding free Java-Script from  Dynamic Drive.comClick here to enlarge the project description.(PA-BCIT Standards: 15.3.8.S, 15.4.8.H)

Technology Current Event Video:  We finished class today with a video from Code.org about why schools should teach computer coding.













June 11, 2018
44 minutes

Google Earth Tour Quiz:  As a follow-up to our previous tour on Google Earth students were challenged to list everywhere they had gone and what they had seen on their tour of the 3 dimensional visual imagery in Google Earth last class. This activity helped to demonstrate the effectiveness of using 3D spatial references, such as the virtual environment of Google Earth, to augment memory. QUIZ: Where I went on Google Earth (PA-BCIT Standards: 15.4.8.A, 15.6.8.M)

http://www.todayincomputerclass.com/8th/FullPageAd.JPG
Finish Full Page Ad Project:
 All students had time today to finish the Full Page Ad project using MS Publisher that we started last class. Everyone had a chance to print a black & white rough draft and review it with the teacher before printing their final draft in color. Click here to enlarge the project description.(PA-BCIT Standards: 15.3.8.A, 15.3.8.B, 15.3.8.E, 15.4.8.D, 15.4.8.G, 15.9.8.A)

Technology Current Event Video:  We finished class today with a British video about the development of graphene.  (PA-BCIT Standard: 15.4.8.A, 15.5.8.J)  (ISTE Standard 1d)











June 7, 2018
91 minutes

Internet Moment: Today we explored the online version of  Google Earth and discussed how a three dimensional virtual environment can be used to augment human memory. We started by discussing what spatial memory is and how it is used to make modern video games so engaging. Students were then introduced to the memory palace or method of loci as an effective way to use 3 dimensional visual imagery to help a person remember large amounts of information. We then went to Google Earth and began a tour of the earth.  The whole class followed a specific list of locations. Next week all students will take a quiz to see how much of the Google Earth tour they can recall. (PA-BCIT Standards: 15.4.8.A, 15.6.8.M)

http://www.todayincomputerclass.com/8th/FullPageAd.JPG
Full page Ad Project: Today students started a classic graphic design project to help them continue to develop their own sense of design and their skills in MS Publisher. Each student selected a full page, full color magazine advertisement to recreate in MS Publisher. The student version of the ad must advertise something different than the original but it should look very similar to the original. Click here to enlarge the project description. We will finish this project next class. (PA-BCIT Standards: 15.3.8.A, 15.3.8.B, 15.3.8.E, 15.4.8.D, 15.4.8.G, 15.9.8.A)

Office Yoga Break:  Students are always reminded to not spend too much time sitting in front of computers.  Breaks should be taken at least every 30-40 minutes.  For our break today we practiced a simple yoga stretch for your back and then everyone had a chance to get up and move around the room some. 

Technology Current Event Video:  We finished class today with a short video from PBS OffBook about careers in graphic design.  












June 5, 2018
0 minutes*

* No class today due to a field trip to the high school and Blue, White & Silver Day.









June 1, 2018
44 minutes

Internet Moment: Today students had an opportunity to play a financial education game from Visa called: Financial Football. Students had 5 minutes to play the game which involved answering multiple choice questions that tested their financial literacy. We then discussed any terms that confused them. Students were also reminded that they can go back to PracticalMoneySkills.com on their own. Students were also reminded to check out the Personal Finance & Investing class at our high school. (PA-BCIT Standards: 15.6.8.B, 15.6.8.G, 15.6.8.H, 15.6.8.I, 15.6.8.K) (ISTE Standards: 1c, 5c, 5a)

Collaboration Project:  Each student used a Google Drawing to make a Venn Diagram that listed their favorite foods. Their partners for this project were other students in this room but it was explained to the class that they could have had partners anywhere in the world for this project.   This project was an example of online collaboration.   Click here to enlarge the project description. (PA-BCIT Standards: 15.3.8.E, 15.3.8.M, 15.3.8.S, 15.3.8.T, 15.3.8.U, 15.3.12.W, 15.3.8.X, 15.4.8.D, 15.4.8.F) 

Technology Current Event Video:  We finished class today with a video about concept projects that Microsoft is working on.













May 30, 2018
0 minutes*

* No class today due to the 8th grade trip to Great Adventure








May 25, 2018
104 minutes

https://www.khanacademy.org/
Internet Moment: Everyone had a chance to explore Khan Academy and look for video lessons that relate to what they are currently learning in 8th grade. Students were reminded that this resource can help them with their homework here at the middle school and at the high school next year. We also had everyone attempt to sign in using their CRSD Google Accounts and Google Classroom. (PA-BCIT Standards: 15.6.8.M, 15.4.8.A, 15.8.8.K) (ISTE Standards: 1d, 3b, 3c) 

http://www.todayincomputerclass.com/8th/Brochure.JPG
Copyright Brochure Project:
     Students also had a chance to work on their brochure project today.  Once they had finished they could review a rough draft with the teacher.  Several students finished and printed this project in class today.  Everyone will have time to finish the project next class.  Click here to enlarge the project description.   (PA-BCIT Standards: 15.1.5.B, 15.3.5.A, 15.3.8.B, 15.3.5.D, 15.3.8.D, 15.3.8.E, 15.4.8.G, 15.3.8.U, 15.6.8.L)

Office Yoga Break: During long classes like this one students are always reminded to take breaks and get exercise. Students shouldn't spend more than 30-40 minutes in front of a computer without taking a break. As part of our break today we practiced simple office yoga stretch for your thigh.

Technology Current Event Video:  In preparation for the 8th Grade trip to Great Adventure next week we watched a short video from Fox 5 NY News about the technology behind the park's roller coasters.










May 23, 2018
44 minutes

http://www.gapminder.org/
Internet Moment: Today our students were introduced to the "joy of statistics" by viewing Gap Minder.org which is a free online resource where statistics from all around the world are presented in an easy to understand visual format. We looked at the "Wealth & Health of Nations" chart. As a demonstration of how the website works we tracked the life expectancy and income changes in the USA and Japan over the last 200 years. We also looked at how 8th grade math scores had changed in Japan, Canada and the United States. Student were also shown that countries where students have poor dental hygiene also tend to have higher math test scores as an example of a spurious correlation. Everyone then had time to explore the website on their own. (PA-BCIT Standards: 15.4.8.A, 15.7.8.A, 15.7.8.F, 15.7.8.H, 15.7.8.L, 15.8.8.A, 15.9.8.J)

http://www.todayincomputerclass.com/8th/Brochure.JPG
Copyright Brochure Project: Students take an existing brochure and recreate it in Publisher 2016 using a template as a starting point. The original brochure they were given was about copyright laws. Students were shown how to use Bing Images to find public domain images that they could even use for commercial purposes. Students also practiced their typing today by re-typing the text of the original brochure. Everyone will have time to finish and print this project next class. Click here to enlarge the project description. (PA-BCIT Standards: 15.9.5.L, 15.3.8.E, 15.3.5.H, 15.4.5.K, 15.4.8.B, 15.3.8.U)

Technology Current Event Video:  We finished class with a video of Hans Rosling talking about how the world is doing better than you think.













May 21, 2018
42 minutes*

Finish International Blog Post Activity:  Everyone had some time to finish the post to Ms. Golubeva's class bloag at Lyceum 1 in Kansk, Russia Our students were asked to choose one blog entry to comment on from this list:  Gym ClassWood Shop ClassMusic ClassSkyping with other Classes.  Everyone had a opportunity to share their Google Doc with another student and have it proofread before we posted the comments online.  This activity gave us an opportunity to  talk about the differences and similarities between cultures and schools around the world.  (PA-BCIT Standards: 15.3.8.G, 15.3.8.M, 15.4.5.A, 15.4.8.B)  

Internet Moment: Today we looked at three online resources for free ebooks and audio books. We started with the Gutenberg Project (Gutenberg.org) which offers free access to 54,000 ebooks and over 100,000 additional free ebooks from other resources. We then looked at Lit2Go which is a free online collection of audio books in MP3 format that is available from the University of South Florida. Finally we visited Google Books (books.google.com) and discussed how to access and search the text of the free ebooks available there. We also discussed copyright laws and how these books came to be available online or in the public domain. Students were also reminded to search for free ebook reader apps for their phone and tablet devices. (PA-BCIT Standards: 15.1.5.B, 15.2.5.L, 15.3.8.E, 15.4.8.B)

Technology Current Event Video:  We finished class today with a TED presentation by Margaret Stewart about how copyright issues are handled by YouTube.  

*Class time was shorter today due to Keystone Testing









May 17, 2018
104 minutes

https://www.dafont.com/
Internet Moment: Today we looked at two online resources for fonts. DaFont.com offers over 34,000 fonts that are either freewareshareware, demo versions or in the public domain. These fonts can be downloaded and installed but students were also shown how they can use the Snipping Tool to get images of the fonts they might like. Students were also shown how they could make their own font using a website like YourFonts.com(PA-BCIT Standards: 15.3.8.E, 15.6.5.M, 15.4.5.A)

Career Readiness Checklist:  Students participated in a Career Readiness Survey which is part of the Pennsylvania Academic Standards for Career Education and Work.  The questions all referred to activities that all 8th grade students did in their Career Exploration class.

Finish Font Guide Project:  All students had time to finish the MS Publisher project that we started last class.  Everyone printed and turned in their finished font guide.   

Office Yoga Break:  Students are always reminded to not spend too much time sitting in front of computers.  Breaks should be taken at least every 30-40 minutes.  For our break today we practiced a simple yoga stretch for your back and then everyone had a chance to get up and move around the room some.

Log on and Check Grades:
 All students were asked to log into the Home Access Center and check their grades.  Starting in 7th grade students can accessed their grades using their regular district log in and password. All students should be able to log in and check their grades routinely. Students were also reminded to check out the eSchoolPLUS app that's available from Google Play and the iTunes Store as well as a free app called Graded.us which can be used to check your grades on your phone.

Internet Moment: To help our students understand cultural diversity on the internet we investigated what our own accents sound like by taking the NY Times Dialect Quiz. Students then had an opportunity to compare the dialect heat maps from all the students in our class using a shared Google Slide Show. (PA-BCIT Standard: 15.3.8.J, 15.3.8.K, 15.3.8.X, 15.4.8.D)

Language Differences Video: As a follow-up to the dialect activity we watched a short video from The Atlantic about the various dialects in the United States.


https://www.google.com/maps/place/Lyceum+%E2%84%961/@56.8160885,60.8852024,3z/data=!4m5!3m4!1s0x5cded225b5a9e7ed:0xa41d3b469fb17978!8m2!3d56.2191225!4d95.7257688
Student Blogging Activity:
 Our students prepared a one paragraph blog comment for students in Ms. Golubeva's class at Lyceum 1 in Kansk, Russia Our students were asked to choose one blog entry to comment on:  


Our students were asked to demonstrate appropriate internet communication skills and paragraph writing skills. Students were reminded to use the spelling and grammar checking features in Google Docs to help them. Our students also demonstrated using the MLA format in Google Docs as part of this project.  Everyone was also reminded that whenever they post anything online they should make an effort to make sure it will reflect positively on them.  Everyone had a opportunity to share their Google Doc with another student and have it proofread before we posted the comments online.  This activity gave us an opportunity to  talk about the differences and similarities between cultures and schools around the world.  (PA-BCIT Standards: 15.3.8.G, 15.3.8.M, 15.4.5.A, 15.4.8.B)

Technology Current Event Video: We finished class today with a short video created by Mrs. Yollis' 3rd grade students in California. In the video they explained how to write a quality blog comment.













May 14, 2018
104 minutes

Internet Moment:  To start our class today Mr. McNulty demonstrated how Google and other companies use GPS data from cell phones to track the locations of individuals.  In the demonstration Mr. McNulty showed the class a detailed map prepared by Google of exactly where he and his family were in August of 2014. Using location history (now known as timeline) students could see that he was riding Dumbo the Flying Elephant at precisely 1:08 on August 10, 2014. Everyone then had a chance to open their own Google Accounts and check their location history.  Students were also shown how to access location history on an iPhone.

https://login.microsoftonline.com/
Office 365 Accounts:
  All students were reminded that they have Office 365 accounts. As part of this process students had to set their time zone.  We discussed GMT, UTC and Zulu time as part of this activity.  They were also shown how they can access them online from anywhere.  They were also shown how to access their One Drive. Students were also reminded that if they logged onto their Office 365 accounts at home they could download several Microsoft Office programs onto their personal computers for free.  Students also had some time to explore Office 365.


https://crsd4-my.sharepoint.com/personal/jmcnulty_crsd_org/_layouts/15/WopiFrame.aspx?guestaccesstoken=D48bfZc9rBpsoW0b2rFaAwmxfOLAw%2fanausEglhHvRw%3d&docid=0253d2fd0a106497e86c2680a76982f42&action=view
Basic Email Etiquette: All students logged into their Office 365 accounts and accessed their Outlook email. We discussed the importance of being able to use email for formal communication.  Students were also reminded that the emails they send using their school account are not private in any way. We also discussed what CC: means (carbon copy), what should go in the Subject line of an email and how to start writing a formal email. Each student then practiced good email etiquette by sending a formal thank you email to a Council Rock faculty member of their choice. The directions for this project can be viewed here(PA-BCIT Standards 15.3.8.E, 15.3.8.M, 15.3.8.O, 15.3.8.Q, 15.3.8.R, 15.3.8.S, 15.3.8.U, 15.3.8.X, 15.4.8.D, 15.4.8.G)

Email Etiquette For Students Video:  We finished this activity with a short video about how to email a teacher.  (PA-BCIT Standards 15.3.8.E, 15.3.8.M, 15.3.8.O, 15.3.8.Q, 15.3.8.R, 15.3.8.S, 15.3.8.U, 15.3.8.X, 15.4.8.D, 15.4.8.G)


Office Yoga Break:  Students are always reminded to not spend too much time sitting in front of computers.  For our break today we practiced a simple yoga stretch for your ankles and then everyone had a chance to get up and move around the room some.

Font Presentation:  In this presentation the development of the two basic font families (serif & sans serifas well as the best uses for each was discussed. Students were also shown how they read primarily through identifying sight words and why it's so hard to spell check and grammar check your own work.

http://www.todayincomputerclass.com/8th/FontGuide.JPG
Publisher Font Guide Project:  After a presentation about the origins of fonts, the two main categories for fonts (serif & san serif) and the best uses for each category students proceeded to make a Font Guide in MS Publisher. The final student project should look just like the original. We also discussed the concept of WYSIWYG in graphic design on computers. Click here to enlarge the project description. Everyone will have time to finish this project next class. (PA-BCIT Standards: 15.3.8.E, 15.4.8.G, 15.4.2.K, 15.3.8.X) 

Font Conference Video:  As a follow-up to the Font Presentation we watched a short video from College Humor about a fictitious "Font Conference".












May 10, 2018
91 minutes

https://kahoot.it/
Online Game: Our class played an online logo quiz game in class today. Many teachers at the middle school and high school use online games such as Kahoot, Quizlet and Quizizz for review activities and all of our students should be familiar with how to play them. Jack came in first place followed by Anibal and Rylee.  Students were reminded that these games can also be played on smart phones and they can even be assigned as homework. The concept of gamification in education was also discussed.


Profile Pictures: Students opened up their school Google Accounts and we talked about how their profile picture works and that it is public. They were then shown Cartoonify.de and students had time to make a custom profile picture.  We discussed the difference between your professional and personal image and what online "personal branding" was all about. Students were reminded of the importance of learning to manage what they looked like online. Students then shared their images using network drives. Sharing files by using drag & drop and the district Swap Drive was demonstrated. The best use of the H: & X: drives was also explained.  Everyone then had an opportunity to set their school profile picture.


Office Yoga Break:  Students are always reminded to not spend too much time sitting in front of computers.  Breaks should be taken at least every 30-40 minutes.  For our break today we practiced a simple yoga stretch for your back and then everyone had a chance to get up and move around the room some.

Typing Test: All students took a typing test using TypingTest.com. Each student had 10 minutes to take the 1 minute test multiple times. Their best adjusted speed was recorded and graphed in an Excel spreadsheet. The average typing speed for this class was:  36.1 WPMClick here for more information about typing speeds at Newtown Middle School. We also reviewed the graph below:


Online Typing Activities: As a follow up to the typing test students were given some time to find some online typing activities (tutorials or games) that they enjoyed. They were to then add these typing activities to their favorites or bookmarks list so they could go back and practice their typing skills in class when they finish projects.

http://www.todayincomputerclass.com/8th/PublisherLogo.JPG
Publisher Logo Project:  We started with an introduction to MS Publisher 2016. Publisher was described as a graphic design program which is used to express your ideas visually. The field of graphic design was also explained.  Students were reminded that learning basic graphic design skills will help them to communicate their ideas effectively. Students then became familiar with Publisher 2016 by making a simple logo. Next class we will share the finished logos in a gallery walk activity. Click here to enlarge the project description(PA-BCIT Standards: 

Logo Design Video:    
We finished class today with a short video from Vox about the basics of logo design.











May 8, 2018
104 minutes

Introduction to Basic Computer Skills Class: Basic rules and classroom procedures were explained. Students were specifically reminded that because technology is constantly changing they should get into the habit of helping each other out and demonstrating the ability to learn new computer skills through experimentation. All students reported that they had helped an adult with computer skills but they were reminded that it's important to also get used to helping each other.

Internet Moment: Students were asked to compare three popular news aggregator websites: Google NewsBing News and Yahoo. We looked at their home pages, their features and their overall appearance. Though the results were split, a plurality of our students said they preferred Yahoo News when looking for current events online. Students were also asked to explore their own digital footprint by searching for themselves on various news sites. (PA BCIT Standards: 15.3.8.E, 15.6.5.L)

Class Blog: Students were shown TodayInComputerClass.com and told that they can check here anytime to review what work was done in class. We also discussed what a web log or blog was, how blogs developed into microblogs like Twitter and now mobile phone based apps like Instagram. This website is the blog or web log for our class. Students were also told that their parents will be sent an email with a link to this website so they can also review what we are doing in computer class each day.

Finish MLA Paragraph Project:  Everyone had some time to finish the typing project we started last class.  Click here to enlarge the project description. (PA-B.C.I.T. Standards: 15.3.5.A, 15.3.8.A)

Break:  Students are always reminded to not spend too much time sitting in front of computers.  Breaks should be taken every 30-40 minutes.  For our break today we practiced a simple yoga stretch for your neck and then everyone had a chance to get up and move around some.

http://www.todayincomputerclass.com/8th/pixlrproject.JPG
Pixlr.com Project: Students were shown how to use the online photo editor pixlr.com to edit a photograph. We also discussed professional digital photo editing with Adobe PhotoShop(PA BCIT Standards: 15.4.8.F, 15.4.5.G)  Students shared their modified photos using various district network resources and demonstrated basic skills such as drag & drop. The best use of the H:, S: & X: drives was also explained. You can view thumbnail images of the adjusted photographs below.  Click here to enlarge the project description.


Setting up Student Passwords: All students were given some suggestions to help them develop good passwords. Some suggested good password practices were: 
  • Come up with a collection of passwords to rotate through instead of just one
  • Make a pass phrase instead of a password
  • Use numbers, letters and symbols 
Student passwords must fit the following parameters: Upper case letters, lower case letters, numbers and symbols. (PA-BCIT Standard: 15.4.8.F)

https://accounts.google.com/ServiceLogin?service=mail&passive=true&rm=false&continue=https://mail.google.com/mail/&ss=1&scc=1&ltmpl=default&ltmplcache=2&emr=1&osid=1#identifier
Gmail Accounts:
 Students were shown how to access their CRSD Google Gmail today. Students were reminded that they will have access to their google accounts and school gmail until they graduate from high school. Students were also reminded that they can access their Google email from anywhere in the world where they have internet access. Everyone had time to experiment with sending and receiving emails. 
Students were also reminded to not use their school email for anything inappropriate. 

Technology Current Event Video: Today's video was inspired by an original presentation created by a high school teacher in Colorado, Mr. Karl Fisch.  Here is a link to his blog: THE FISCHBOWL for more information.  The original presentation was created for a faculty meeting and has been recreated several times by people all over the world.  This version of the video was created in 2016 by Jose Esteves.  He is a professor at the I.E. Business School in Madrid, Spain. (PA-BCIT Standard: 15.4.8.A)










May 4, 2018
91 minutes

Mr. McNulty was absent today.  Students did the following activities:

Assign Seats:  All students have an assigned seat/computer in the lab. Students have a responsibility to report any problems with the machine they have been assigned. In this way we all participate in maintaining our school computers. Everyone should use the same computer every time they come to the lab. Students were also reminded to adjust the keyboard, mouse, chair and monitor to meet their ergonomic needs when they come to class.

Log On & Explore: Everyone had time to log on and explore Windows 10.  All students had time to explore the start menu, Cortana  and the various programs that are available to them at school.  

Internet Moment:  All students went to http://geoguessr.com/ and tried out the online geography game.  It drops you off in a Google Street View picture and students had to guess where they were in the world. 

http://www.todayincomputerclass.com/8th/MLAparagraph.JPG
MLA Format: All 8th grade students must demonstrate the ability to use the MLA format in MS Word (which is the format used at Council Rock and most colleges). Click here to enlarge the project description. Students were shown how to set-up their Word Documents in the MLA Format. This project involves several skills including: double spacingchanging fonts and sizes, changing indentation settings and accessing the header. Next class we will practice uploading a Word doc from our network drive to Google Drive. We will also practice  downloading a Google Doc as a Word Doc.  Click here to enlarge the project description. (PA-B.C.I.T. Standards: 15.3.5.A, 15.3.8.A)

Technology Current Event Video:  Unfortunately there wasn't enough time for a video today.

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