This book concise and to the point, it provides everything the reader needs to know in order to quickly and easily get “up and running” with Microsoft Windows XP, Office XP, and FrontPage XP. It guides readers step-by-step through the use of the software’s basic, commonly accessed features and makes learning easy and fun, helping build confidence and fostering early competence. A useful tool for anyone needing to learn the building blocks of the most popular software on the market today, this book is of special importance for educators of primary computer classes, as well as computer-department trainers and those entering the computer workforce.
Teaching and Learning with Microsoft Office and FrontPage has been designed to give busy (and often overwhelmed) teachers and students a quick way to understand the basics of key software applications. Our vision is threefold:
• to give a foundation of the basics of common application software;
• to provide a vision and a path of how to integrate and utilize the software within classroom settings (Note: Our goal is for you to frequently say,”Yes, I can use this!”);
• to create a learning environment that is engaging, interesting, and effective.
Why so basic?
Three points we want you to remember:
1. Teachers and students have more demands put on them than ever before.
2. Application software (e.g., word processors) are more powerful (i.e., have more features) and can offer more help to the teacher and students than in the past.
3. More than 90 percent of the time that teachers and students use computers they are working on the basic features of the most common software programs.
An understanding of the basic features will help you use the computer in the classroom. Once you have that foundation, you will know what information to request and how to find it as additional, more advanced features are needed. Without the basic foundation, you won’t know when, why, or how to use those advanced features. That would only lead to frustration-and we don’t want you to experience more of that than necessary.
Why use Microsoft Office and FrontPage?
Basically, two reasons drove this decision. First, this software is prevalent in the majority of homes and schools. Second, because they are from the same “family” of software, they work in an integrated manner with many common toolbars, menus, and so on. For the novice, a feeling of familiarity when going from one program to the next is important in building confidence as well as in increasing speed and skill.
How are the chapters outlined?
All chapters are structured in a similar fashion. However, each is independent and thus the chapter sequence can be modified to fit the schedules and desires of the course instructor.
This section explains the goals of the chapters, the purpose of the software, reasons for learning, and some basic ideas of how it can be used by teachers and students.
This section allows one to view and work with the main workspace of the target software. Menus are examined, and key words, organizational concepts, and tools are highlighted and explained.
III. Level 1
A short scenario or case is given that incorporates some type of project previously completed using the targeted software. Major steps in the process of constructing the project are highlighted, and users are guided through a step-by-step procedure to create a similar project.
IV. Level 2
The scenario from Level 1 generally continues within this lesson and an additional, more complex project is outlined and completed. Users are then directed to alter the program and construct their own version. In this case, users are encouraged to use the program’s Help to determine how to complete specific processes. Key words and phrases relevant to completing the task are listed for the individual to use with Help if it is needed. The focus is on using Help to acquire the desired results.
V. Level 3
Integration is the focus of this level. Beginning with a presented lesson plan, users are shown how integration of the software can occur. Moreover, they are given opportunities to attempt to develop technology-enhanced lesson plans given specific situations. They are taught to use the Integration Assessment Questionnaire, and they explore and reflect on the relevant NETS Standards and how their work pertains to those standards.
VI. Resources and references
The final section of each chapter highlights Web sites that the student can visit to either learn how teachers are using the target software in the classroom or complete tutorials to develop additional skills with the software. In addition, Quick References are included to help students recall, identify, and find specific features of the software.
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