About this Daily Classroom Special
Bits & Bytes combines technology objectives, activity ideas, web sites, and
resources in an effort to make it easier for everyone to incorporate technology into their instruction. Bits & Bytes is maintained by Barbara Smith, Magnet Coordinator at Harvard
Elementary, Houston (TX) and Teachers Network web mentor.
To the Bits & Bytes Directory
K - 2
Use networking terminology such as on-line, network, or password and
access remote equipment on a network such as a printer.
Contrast on-line and off-line. Show students how you can work on
a computer whether it is networked or not. If it has an active connection
to a phone line, Internet, or a server, it is on-line. Being on-line
lets you communicate with other people and machines, sharing programs,
hardware, and information. If it is a stand-alone or not connected,
then it is off-line. People also use these methods in combination.
They go on-line to do something (usually to download files), then
work on the files off-line. If you are paying for on-line time with
your service provider, this combination method lessens your on-line
time and saves you money.
You can relate this to using a cell phone. Someone calls you and
gives you a math problem. If you stay on the phone while you solve
the problem, you are on-line and using more airtime, costing you more
money. The best use of resources is to get the problem, hang up, solve
the problem, and call back when you have the answer.
Network: Get several books about a topic from the library, and distribute
to individuals in the classroom. Ask them how much they can learn
if they only look at their book. How much could they learn if they
looked at all the books? Use yarn to show how computers and other
peripherals are joined together (networked) to let you use more resources,
sharing information that each person has. If possible, take students
to view a server in the building, or bring in a picture of one. Show
them how the cables connect the hardware together.
If you are connected to a network printer, let a child draw a picture
on a computer, then print to the network printer, and retrieve. How
does a network let us share work and ideas with others?
Password: bring locking diary or box. Relate how a password is like
a key that lets only us get into our own work and network. Why do
people get upset when others get into their work and "hack" a site?
Why is it illegal?
3 - 5
Identify and describe the characteristics of digital input, processing,
Bring a simple appliance from home (toaster, waffle iron, paper
shredder, food processor) and relate input, processing, and output.
Example with toaster: Illustrate putting an item in (bread = input),
the appliance does some work on the item (heating the bread = processing),
take it out (toasted bread = output).
Now relate this to a computer:
Input=wiggling your fingers on the keyboard
Processing=computer puts letters and numbers on an imaginary piece
of paper in a format we choose
Output=final product, letter, graph, etc.