Monday, August 27, 2012

This Week in the Preschool Computer Lab: Picture Cards

Someone will be making a video of my teaching in the lab this week. Nerve-wracking! In trying to think how to spice things up a bit, I came up with a quick idea that may be useful in a variety of classrooms. As a regular part of my lessons, I quiz my preschool students orally about the parts of the computer. Once we've learned all of the parts, we practice with questions like, "Which part can I use for writing on the computer?" [keyboard] "Which part is kind of like a T.V.?" [display] "Which part is the place where the games come from?" [system unit]

I have also on occasion incorporated other types of prompts, such as playing recordings of the hard drive, the clicking mouse button, or someone typing, to see if students can identify which part they are hearing. This year I may do one of those macro photo super-close-ups too and see if students can recognize a part from a small detail.

Now for my idea. It has always bothered me that I have my preschoolers sitting on the carpet for so long while we do our introductory mini lesson. I've always wanted to incorporate some more movement. This weekend, I sat down and made some cards showing the various computer parts and captioned with the matching words. I printed them on cardstock and will distribute them to my students before we begin the computer parts portion of the lesson tomorrow. I thought I would call out the clues and have students stand up if they think my clues are for the part on their cards. You could easily use this same strategy for lots of different lessons, and it was easy to prepare. It only took me 10 minutes or so to create the cards.

Maybe I'll post the cards on TpT another night. I'd love to share them with you, but I'm tired! Time to relax with my sweetie!

How do you keep your students engaged and moving when the lessons get long?

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