March 21, 2017
44 minutes

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 Doc. (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.

Log on and Check Grades: All students were asked to log into the Home Access Center and check their grades. Since January 1st, 2015 all HACaccounts have been updated so that 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.

Technology Current Event Video:  We finished class today with a conceptual video from the Corning Corporation about the possible used for their glass products in the future.  (PA-BCIT Standard: 15.4.8.A)

March 17, 2017
91 minutes

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.

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. 

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.  Students were also shown a collection of generic profile pictures that they could use.  We discussed the difference between your professional and personal persona and what "online brand" was all about. Students were reminded of the importance of learning to manage what they looked like online.  Everyone then had an opportunity to set their school profile picture.

Break:  Students are always reminded to not spend too much time working on computers and to take breaks every 30-40 minutes. For our break today we conducted a probability experiment about matching birthdays.  You can read about it here.  Everyone was asked to get up and find the other person in the room who shares their birthday.

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, mix number, letters and symbols together. Student 
passwords must fit the following parameters: 
  1. Include upper case letters
  2. Include lower case letters
  3. Include numbers
  4. Include symbols/punctuation
    * Note that 3 of the 4 options are required.
(PA-BCIT Standard:  15.4.8.F)

Basic Email Etiquette: All students logged into their Gmail accounts and accessed their email. We discussed the importance of being able to use email for formal communication and to not think that emails they sent were in any way private. 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, 15.3.8.M, 15.4.8.F)

March 15, 2017
0 minutes*

* Class was cancelled today due to the snow day

March 13, 2017
46 minutes*

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 Google 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)

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.

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) Unfortunately we ran out of time to complete this project. 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 will also be explained. Click here to enlarge the project description.

Technology Current Event Video:  Unfortunately we ran out of time for a video today.

* Class time was adjusted today due to the World Languages Assembly

March 9, 2017
91 minutes

Mr. McNulty was Absent:
  Students did the following activities:

Seating Assignments:
  All students were assigned their seats when they arrived.

Log on and Explore:  All students had time to log on and explore what's on the computers. The machines in the computer lab are the only ones in the building that have Windows 10 installed on them.  Students had time to
explore the start menu, Cortana and the various programs available to them at school. 

Internet Moment:  All students went to GeoGuessr.com and spend 5 minutes playing the game at the beginning class.  

Student Technology Use Survey:  All students in this class participated in the annual NMS Student Technology Use Survey.  After the survey students had an opportunity to view the results from previous years.  All results going back to 2006 can be viewed here.

MLA Paragraph:   All 8th grade students must demonstrate the ability to use the MLA format (which is used at Council Rock and most colleges) in MS Word 2016. Click here to enlarge the project description. This project involves several skills including: double spacing, changing fonts and sizes, changing indentation settings and accessing the header. Follow this link to a complete online tutorial that explains all these skills. All students should have time to finish typing, print the document two-sided using Printer #1 and turn it in. (PA-B.C.I.T. Standards: 15.3.5.A, 15.3.8.A)

Computer Class Survey:  All students completed the computer class survey.  The results of this survey are used to guide the instruction for the class.  You can view the survey to the right.  Click to enlarge.  The survey will also be used as the outline for a presentation next class. 

Online Typing Test:  When instructed to do so all students should went to typingtest.com/ and took the one minute typing test.  Everyone had 10 minutes to get their best "ADJUSTED SPEED" We will review the average and highest speeds for the entire 7th & 8th grades next class and students will be given some strategies to improve their typing speeds.

Technology Current Event Video:  There wasn't enough time for a technology current event video today.