Computer Technology Concepts
Dennis Read
Zip Code: 20715
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Page Last Updated May 30, 2014
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***** Extra Credit Information *****

Separate extra credit assignments are not available. Throughout the quarter, I maintain 2 running-records (Classroom Learning Skills) that benefit the students who maintain and respect classroom expectations and guidelines. Following classroom rules is important, and students who do that earn extra credit throughout thd quarter. The CLS assessment is equivalent to a typical quiz grade.

*******Special Homework Information********

As a back-up to papers I distribute in class, I post the identical information on "". Use the links below to access Homework and other information. Once inside Google Docs, click on the link you need. Then, click File, Download, Open, and the document is ready to print. For Homework, you may also just view it, complete it, and return to me on notebook paper. Any Homework not returned = 0.

Week 1 (March 31, Start of Quarter 1)

Welcome to all students (and their families) for Quarter 4! I am very happy to serve as the Computer Technology Teacher at Samuel Ogle Middle School, in this my 17th year at Ogle.

After orientation classes (one each for A and B day students), we will be jumping right into Typing Lessons with the Mavis Beacon program. Students will be soon be taking notes from my reading using MS Word. I will read to them for 2 classes while they take notes, then they will take notes from their own reading for 2 classes. As their first paper, students will draft a summary of their Cornell notes, and then proofread the document in order to prepare it for grading. Overall, students will compose 2 papers during the Quarter in my class. Each grade level has specific Social Studeies content on which we focus: Grade 8, American Civil War; Grade 7, Geography of Australia; Grade 6, Geography of South America.

Grades will be appearing in SchoolMax soon after orientation and as assignments are given. We are just getting started, so it may take a little time to get up to our usual speed and pace with grades, assignments, and reporting. Be patient, please. Typically, I enter 2 grades or more for each student weekly once we are underway.

The Grading weights are: Classwork, 70%; Assessments, 20%; Homework, 10%.

My Homework policy is as follows: Homework returned on time can earn full credit. All late Homework earns 50 points (except for excused absences.) Homework not returned earns a zero. Parents - monitor homework! I type the assignment, copy it, and put it in student's hands every Thursday and Friday. It is due in their next class. I do not re-issue 'lost' homework papers. Students may get the assignment from a friend and submit it on notebook paper, or access it through this page (link at the top.) Late homework due to an approved absence is not penalized.

Be sure to read the 'Welcome Letter' that I will give to all students; it explains the course objectives and many other details that you need to know. Students also have a list of 'Classroom Learning Skills'; they are graded on their performance with these skills twice quarterly (before and after the Progress Report.) I finalize these CLS assessments just before the Progress Report and Report Card window closes, but I keep an ongoing checklist of infractions daily. CLS include basic but important rules, procedures, and skills that are important for a productive and safe learning environment, including my classroom and the hallway. All students will get 100 points on this assessment to start, but it is up to them to maintain those points throughout the quarter. Infractions cost them 5 points each.

If you do not receive the 2 handouts from your child, they are accessible through the link on this page, "Handouts for Parents".

Mr. Read
Computer Technology Concepts

Week 2 (April 7) Notice: Quiz 1 will be Tueday/Wednesday this week

Orientation is completed for all A and B day classes. Every student received 2 handouts that explain my course, grading, and expectations. Homework #1 will be distributed Thursday and Friday of every week, starting with April 3 and 4. It is always due the follwoing Mon/Tues. (see more above)

Beginning with Class #2 (in week 1), we will begin writing our first research paper. All work is done in class under my supervision. We spend 4 classes with note-taking, 1 class drafting a summary, then 1 more class editing and proofreading. Paper 1 will be graded in class with a Peer Evaluation tool.

Quiz 1 will be this week on Tuesday and Wednesday. It covers the 2 handouts from Orientation, basic typing procedures, and other information from Orientation on Day 1. See my Study Guides in these pages, as well.

Be aware that all paperwork I distribute in class is available in these schoolnotes; this is especially important for Homework that needs replacement. In addition, there are many files that I create and use as templates for class; we download and save many of these files during class throughout the Quarter. This saves time and allows students more time to read and write their content material.

Regarding reading and writing, it is imperative in my course that students use their own thoughts, words, and ideas when they write in class. Copying/pasting text, or re-writing word-for-word from a web-based article is plagiarism and never allowed. If I detect plagiarism, the students receives a '0' for the paper.

Paraphrasing is acceptable if done correctly. In its simplest form, paraphrasing is stating something by giving the meaning in different words. Copying and pasting text and erasing a word or two is not paraphrasing. Students need to read, think, and compose sentences when we write a paper. Students are always expected to compose text "in their own words."

In our emerging high-tech world, I am not a proponent of replacing brain power with computer power. I foster traditional reading and writing skills, critical thinking, creativity, and originality of ideas. Computers and programs are only the tools of my course. The grand design of our accomplishment is molded by our ability to comprehend and follow-through with the assignments properly. This includes rigorous thinking, meaniful conversation, and clear expectations between myself and every student.

Mr. Dennis Read

Computer Technology Concepts

Week 3 (April 22)

Welcome back! I hope that everyone had a wonderful Spring Break and Easter holiday season!

We are continuing to write Paper 1 on our return after 4 note-taking sessions before the break. I have instructions in my schoolnotes that we will download, save, and read in class before drafting our summary. Students may briing hand-written notes from home, optionally, as an additional resource. Do not bring anything typed or printed off of the web, please. I want students to read and write for this research paper.

After drafting, we will spend a class editing and proofreading; 10 rules for proofreading are attached at the bottom of the Directions for Paper 1; they were also attached at the bottom of Homework 2.

Quiz 2 will be this Thursday and Friday, probably. There is a PBIS activity on Friday which may interfere with these plans, so it is possible that B-day classes will take Quiz 2 on Wednesday this week instead. Read my Study Guides for more information about Quizzes. Material on Quiz 2 includes proofreading rules, basic grammar, and typing questions.

Mr. Dennis Read

Computer Technology Concepts

Week 4 (Apr. 28)

We are finishing Paper #1 - drafting, editing, and proofreading. When done, we will evaluate this work with a peer evaluation tool so that students can assess compliance to project requirements and appreciate various styles of writing. I have suggested that students bring notes from home to help them write in class, but very few have taken advantage of this. I allow hand-written notes in an effort to support reading and writing; e-printed material is not allowed from home for this work.

Homework is distributed weekly on Thursday and Friday; it is always due in the next class, which is Monday and Tuesday, usually. When you see '0' in Schoolmax, it's because Homework was not returned.

Please remind your children that school is still in-session until June 13. I will provide graded work until that time, so it is important for students to have a continued diligence regarding expectations. Simply put: tell them not to slack-off in any class! They need to keep their mind on their classwork every day. Don't let them take an 'early summer vacation' before June 13.

The next Quiz (3) is an internet reading and search quiz. It likely will be Monday and Tuesday of week 5. Students will be asked several questions about their specific Social Studies topic, given and article or two to read, and expected to find answers/solutions withiin expository text. I do not use Google, Bing, Yahoo, or other search engines as a substitute for students reading articles.

Mr. Dennis Read

Computer Technology Concepts

Week 5 (May 5)

Paper #1 is graded, and we have downloaded the template for Paper #2. This 'pictureboard' will be used to make presentation slides later in PowerPoint. Obviously, this is an important paper to complete. PowerPoint is the last program we use in the Quarter. Paper #2 is an expository text and graphics document.

Progress Report grades are complete and posted. Many students have '0' for missing Homework assignments. The good news is that I accept late homework at any time. As the Quarter nears its end, I will post a final deadline for late homework. It will be about a week before the Quarter ends - not at the last moment, for sure.

Quiz #3 is Tuesday and Wednesday this week. It's a search-and-find quiz specific to students Social Studies topic in my class. They just need to read a little bit in a few selected articles during class.

Excel is the next unit, and it will begin in about 2 weeks. We will sort, graph, and calculate data.

Mr. Dennis Read

Computer Technology Concepts

Week 6 (May 12)

Students will finish Paper 2 this Monday and Tuesday. They will need to follow project directions, requirements, and proofreading rules for the best score. We will use this paper to make a PowerPoint presentation in the last weeks of the Quarter.

Once this paper is graded, we will start Excel spreadsheets. We will calculate, graph, and sort a variety of numerical data. Quiz 4 is an Excel vocabulary quiz; I will give students a list of vocabulary and definitions on Homework 6 that will serve as the study guide for this quiz. There are about 13 words and definitions to study. On the quiz, they will match words with definitions. I may distribute Homework 6 early next week so that we can take the test on Thursday/Friday.

Mr. Dennis Read

Computer Technology Concepts

Week 7 (May 19)

Students are using MS Exce spreadsheets now and for the next several classes. Our final quiz, #5, will be next week - probably Thursday and Friday. It is a comprehensive test on Excel and students will be able to use their computer as a resource. Any in-class workt hat we have done in Excel may be used - no Internet.

There will be no 'B' classes this week on Friday, May 23, because of Field Day on Friday and the 8th Grade Field Trip. Monday, May26, is a holiday for Memorial Day - no school.

When we are done with Excel (late next week) students will use PowerPoint to compose a slideshow presentation that summarizes theier research for the Quarter. If time permits and we finsih the project, it will be graded. If not, students will still present their work during class in the last 2 days, June 11 and 12. June 13 is a half-day for classes.

Late homework will continue to be accepted for another 2 weeks, but I will annouce a final deadline soon. I will not accept late homework the last week of school. At this time, Friday, June 6 appears to be the last day to return late homework for my course.

Mr. Dennis Read

Computer Technology Concepts

Week 8 (May 27)

We are finishing Excel this week and taking our final exam this Thursday and Friday.

The last day for all homework return is Friday, June 6; this includes any late homework. Homework 8 is our final homework and is being distributed this Thursday and Friday.

Our last unit is PowerPoint; students will begin making slides immediately after their exam. If time permits and we are able to finish this project, then it will be graded. Otherwise, we are sharing our knowledge and improving our skills in learning to use this popular presentation program.

Students may use flash drives from now until the end of the quarter to save their classwork folder. They have created a fair amount of work and may use it elsewhere. Or, they simply may want to show you what we've been doing!

Mr. Dennis Read


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