I have talked about creating a text book for our Christian School’s Computer Class. This may be one of those projects that just gets talked about, but maybe this conversation will help someone else looking to do the same thing.

Right now, I am just brainstorming on what topics the book should include.

Audience: 9th-12th Grade
General Topic: Computer Applications

My thought is to cover in detail the necessary topics that anyone would need in using computers. Then, I would introduce specialty areas without going into detail.

Necessary Topics
Internet — web browsing, email
Operating Systems
Office Applications — Word Processing, Spreadsheets

Specialty Areas
Internet — web publishing, networking
Computer Administrator — security, installing

The approach for the specialty areas would be to try to introduce the student to the area, and point them in the right direction to pursue it further. The students have a better chance of learning if they enjoy it; they have a better chance of enjoying if they can explore what interests them.

Please comment on areas that I missed or opinions on the approach. Thanks.


Becca · October 8, 2006 at 3:36 am

How much is the book supposed to encompass? Like, are you assuming the students will be proficient with basic keyboarding skills?

Another thought: One way to pique their interest and address a topic that would be relevant to them is to incorporate or discuss popular web presences like MySpace, Facebook, and Blogger. A lot of students are part of these circles, and I think it is good to talk about them since they are realities. First, it would be helpful to address internet security, have a discussion about appropriateness (I know this is getting into social issues like public free speech), and talk about privacy and ethics and wisdom concerning reputation (all great topics in any Christian curriculum). Second, it would make basic programming concepts relevant: you could show students how to improve the “coolness factor” of their web presence by becoming proficient with HTML tags, multimedia importing, and webdesign.

Of course, if this is for a specific school, you might want to check the school’s student internet policies. If they are smart they’ll have some. If they don’t have some and are interested in adopting some, tell them to call CLA for ideas.

Becca · October 13, 2006 at 1:17 am

Assignment thought: When I was in MS Office classes at BJ, one of my favorite assignments was to put together a Powerpoint presentation on any topic I wanted. Knowing how to use (and not misuse) Powerpoint has to be one of the most definitive criteria in impressions of a businessperson’s competence. I’m sure you’ve sat through enough awful presentations to know what I’m talking about.

Stephen · October 13, 2006 at 2:38 am

Here are a few more thoughts that people told me offine. They are posted here to help others out that might be going down the same path.

1) One person asked if there was anything already out there like this.

My response: I don’t know. I need to do my research. Maybe I can figure out how to talk to other Christian Schools and see what they do.

2) Others suggested that I offer evening classes. I could teach a portion of the information that I put into the book. This would be a great outreach thing to do through church.

My response: I like that suggestion — I need to pursue it.

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