Computer Literacy in the Classroom Part 1

For many years, computers weren’t readily available in K-12 schools, and in retrospect, I am very fortunate for having been exposed to a couple of computer classes where I learned some fundamental skills both in middle school and high school. Later in college, I reinforced those skills by spending countless hours at Leavey Library using their computers to type up lengthy research essays. As a working college student, owning a computer was a luxury that I couldn’t afford.

Now, in the present time, computers seem to be more accessible for students. Some schools are even implementing one-to-one laptop programs in an effort to increase equity and decrease the achievement gap. Despite these changes, there seems to be an enormous chasm between the technology students use at home and the technology students use in school.

When we think of this generation of students, we immediately assume they are tech prodigies. At least, I did. Unwittingly, the program exposes their skill deficiencies since many students use their phones and computers mainly for social media and gaming, which does not adequately apply to the software and applications used in education. Undoubtedly, this surfaces as a problem in the classroom.

For me, this issue became evident last year when our school acquired Chromebooks for all our students. As a result, I mostly use Google Suite because it’s the most convenient, and it’s FREE!!! However, many students do not know how to utilize it effectively and accurately. I find myself spending too much time showing them how to create and upload documents properly to Google Classroom. My goal in the near future is to include mini lessons on typing, managing software (e.g. Google Suite), and navigating the internet to conduct research.

To keep myself accountable, I am now creating digital tools that my students will use to improve their computer skills in my classroom. Hope you can utilize them in yours. Happy Tinkering!!!

Student Learning Outcomes

  • Students will learn to type at least 30 words per minute
  • Students will learn PC Keyboard Shortcuts for Tabs, Web Browsing, and Formatting.
  • Students will learn how to troubleshoot their Chromebook.

Learn to Type

Learn Keyboard Shortcuts (PC)

Managing your dozen or so tabs is a must! Here are some very basic tab shortcuts.

Knowing how to take a screenshot from your computer is a great tool. If a student is having trouble, he or she can screenshot the error message and submit it to our tech department.

Students can save time by knowing at least the copy and paste shortcuts.

Learn to Troubleshoot

Students must learn how to troubleshoot basic issues such as a frozen computer and a frozen application. They both have the same solution.

Solution 1

  • ALT + CTRL + Delete
  • Opens Task Manager
  • End Task
  • Restart

Solution 2

  • Hold the power button for 5-10 seconds
  • Forces computer to restart

Published by Noemi Gonzalez

I'm an experienced high school English teacher sharing best practices to inform, to inspire and to reflect on my own craft. Love implementing new ideas and efficient systems that make teaching manageable. Teachers need a surmountable amount of support to help them survive, and every year comes with its own challenges. When I am not teaching or creating, I love hiking, running, anything outdoorsy! I am also a mother of two boys, one in college the other in his last year of middle school. Hope you can utilize what I create and share on this platform.

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