Computer – First Level

Go to: Level 2, Level 3, Level 4, Level 5, Level 6, Level 7, Level 8

Found a problem? Check here.

Course Description — Students will understand basic computer and internet usage and obtain word processing skills, as well as practice in-depth with the following: first grade, typing; second grade, Paint, Publisher; third grade, Power Point; fourth grade, Scratch (computer programming); fifth grade, WordPress blogs; sixth grade, HTML; seventh grade, graphic design including photo manipulation; eighth grade, spreadsheets; high school computer courses are listed on the high school page. (Equivalent free software can be used for any of the listed programs.)

Level 1   

Basic Computer Usage

Week 1

Welcome to your first day of school! I wanted to give you one important reminder before you begin. Many of your lessons below have an internet link for you to click on. When you go to the different internet pages for your lessons, please DO NOT click on anything else on that page except what the directions tell you to. DO NOT click on any advertisements or games. DO NOT click on anything that takes you to a different website. Just stay focused on your lesson and then close that window and you should be right back here for the next lesson. Okay?

  1. If you didn’t get here through My EP Assignments, I suggest you go there and create an account.
  2. Turn on and off computer.
    • With your parents’ permission, turn your computer off and on. Ask how to do it properly.
    • You have to tell the computer to turn off. You do not just push the power button.
    • When the computer is off, there are no lights on the computer and it takes awhile to turn it back on and get going again.
  3. Your computer can also “sleep.”
    • We can let laptops (computers that you can hold on your  lap) sleep by closing their lids. Usually we let our computers sleep during the day and turn them off at night. Find out what your family does.
    • When your computer is waiting too long for you to do something, it may go to sleep. Or it may have a moving picture of some sort come up on the screen. This is called a screensaver. It protects the computer screen, the part you are reading this on right now, from getting burned by having the same lights on it all the time.
  4. This is the end of your work for this course for today. You are allowed to move at your own pace (this is homeschooling), but it’s intended you complete one lesson each week.

Week 2

  1. Vocabulary: desktop, window, program
    • Some computers are called desktop computers because the monitor, or screen that’s attached to the computer’s brain, sits on top of your desk.
    • A laptop computer is one that you can pick up and take with you.
    • A tablet computer is the shape of a piece of paper and doesn’t have a keyboard attached.
  2. Each of those types of computers has what we call a desktop.
    • Your “desktop” is the screen on the computer when it is working. On the desktop there are little pictures of the different programs on our computer. You may have a program on your computer to write email. You may have a program for writing. You may have a program for pictures.
  3. When you open a program, it opens in what we call a window.

Week 3

  1. Click, Double Click, Right Click   You probably already know what it means to click on something. You push the left button on your mouse. Sometimes there is something called a touchpad, and you just have to tap it to click. When you click on something, you are telling the computer you are choosing that thing.
  2. To double click means to click two times very quickly. That tells the computer you want it to open something. We will practice clicking and double clicking in your next computer lesson.
  3. Does your mouse have two clicking buttons? We usually use the one on the left. I hope you know your right from your left (if not, go practice that!) Sometimes we are told to right click on something. That means to click on the button on the right. This opens a menu for us. We use this often to save something.
  4. Go ahead and right click on your desktop. Did a menu open?
  5.  There are so many different types of computers today that you will have to learn how your family’s computers work. My directions will help, but your computer may work differently. Ask if you don’t see on your computer what the lesson is talking about.

Week 4

  1. Opening and closing programs. Double click on one of the little pictures on your desktop. If you know which one it is, click on the one for your writing program. Do not click on any games. It’s not time to play! Double click means click two times fast. Usually we need to double click to open a program. The program will open in its own window.
  2. Look in the top right corner of the program’s window. Is there a red box with an X in it? Click on the X. This closes the program.

Week 5

  1. My documents, creating a folder  Ask a parent or an older sibling to show you where the My Documents folder is on your computer. If you don’t have a folder with your name on it, click on New Folder and type in your name and click OK. Ask for help if you need it. This folder is where you will save the things you make on the computer.
  2. Click on the red X to close the folder window. Now try to find and open the folder with your name on it.


Week 6

  1. When you want to find something on the internet, you have to be careful how you look for it. Here are some tips. Be as specific as possible in your search. Type as many words as you know that will help you find what you are looking for. That will help keep things you are not looking for from coming up.
  2. Also, use kid-friendly search engines. I suggest still turning on Google safe search. You can turn on YouTube’s restricted mode by clicking on it at the bottom of the list when you click on your little account circle in the top right corner. (You can also turn off advertising, so you don’t see bad images.)

Week 7

  1. Internet Safety — Here are some tips for staying safe when you use the internet.
  2. Never sign up for anything online without permission.
  3. When a site asks for a username, you are not supposed to give your real name. Make up a pretend name for yourself.
  4. Never tell anyone online your real name, address, phone number or email address unless your parents tell you it is okay. Even if it’s a friend online, don’t give them information about yourself unless you have permission.

Week 8

  1. Internet security — There are different tools that are used for security on the internet.
  2. One is passwords. A password is a secret word that you use to let the computer or website know that you are you. The best passwords have letters and numbers in them. I use a really good password for important websites (that you don’t use–like for my bank information) but I use a silly password for websites where it is not important, like to play a game. Use only one or two passwords or you’ll forget which password you used where! So many places ask for passwords now. Choose passwords that are at least 6 letters/numbers long. Sometimes 8 is required.
  3. Another tool is software that protects your computer from viruses and adware. A computer virus is a command that sneaks into your computer and tells it to do something you don’t want it to do, like erase everything on your computer! Adware sneaks advertisers’ info onto your computer. You probably have anti-virus software on your computer. A free program is called Avast.
  4. Your computer should block ads that are called “pop-ups.” Sometimes you’ll see a note that says a “pop-up” was prevented from opening. This was a website trying to force their advertisement on you. Sometimes worse. Most of the time you don’t want to see the pop-up that was blocked, but sometimes you need that pop-up for whatever you are doing. If you want to see the pop-up that was blocked, go and ask a parent if it is okay.
  5. If something should pop up, just look for an X to close it down. It is often hidden. Look in the top right corner. Sometimes you have to click on No Thanks. It’s usually written in smaller letters and in a font that makes it harder to see. They don’t want you to close it and refuse their offer. But you can outsmart them.

Week 9

  1. Vocabulary: Here are some words to learn about using the internet.
  • Browser: a browser is what you use to open up websites. You are using a browser right now. There are several different kinds. If it says, “Firefox” in the top left corner of the screen, you are using Firefox. If you clicked on a big e to open a webpage, you are using Internet Explorer. Google Chrome is another. They each are different, but they all serve the same purpose. You could sit in a library to look through books and the library would have tools to help you find books. The browser is your library for the internet, where you hang out to look at webpages.
  • Back: Your browser has a back button, probably an arrow pointing left. If you click on that, it will take you to the last page you were on. Click on it and THEN click on the right arrow, this takes you forward, hopefully back to this page!
  • Refresh: This is another arrow button on your browser. It is an arrow in a circle. It reopens the page you are on. This is useful if something didn’t show up or show up right on the webpage. Sometimes it’s good just to try again. Try it now.
  • Scroll: You scroll down a webpage by clicking on the rectangle button all the way on the right of your screen and dragging it down. You can also click on the down arrow at the bottom right of your screen. You, of course, can also scroll back up. Try it now. Move up and down the screen.

Week 10

  1. Vocabulary: Here is some more internet vocabulary.
  • When a page is loading, it is working on opening. Be patient. Don’t click on anything. Wait. Wait until it is all the way open. There is usually something to show you that something is loading so you can know that your computer is doing something. Sometimes there is something that says loading and counts up to 100% which is when it all done loading. Click on the back button and watch in the corner for a circle spinning or moving in some way. That is letting you know that the page is loading. If you don’t wait for it to load and click on something, it will make it slower. It might make it crash.
  • When your computer crashes, it stops working. Sometimes it’s because it’s trying to do too much at once. Sometimes it’s because there is a problem. Follow the directions on your screen if they come up. Usually you can just start again and it will work.
  • When you download something, you save it onto your computer. Do not download anything without your parents’ permission. Sometimes things like movie or game downloads have viruses on them, and you would be saving a virus on your computer. In your school you will download PDF files. These are worksheets for you. These are safe for you to download.

Week 11

  1. Read one more time  about safe internet usage.

Week 12

  1. Type the letters using your keyboard.

Week 13

  1. You are probably good at this, but try this lesson on using a mouse.

Week 14

  1. Learn how to type some of the keys on the computer keyboard.

Week 15

  1. Practice again how to type some of the keys on the computer keyboard.

Week 16

  1. Practice again how to type some of the keys on the computer keyboard.

Week 17

  1. Practice typing the home keys (the middle row) on your keyboard.
  2. Look for the one with bigger letters. That’s what you need to type.
  3. Feel free to play a few times. Practice makes progress!

Week 18

  1. Email: Today you will learn how to send an email. You will need someone to show you how to open your email account. Usually you can just click on an icon (little picture) and it will take you there.
  2. You need to tell it that you want to write an email. Click on something that says “Compose” or “Send Email.” It should open a blank letter page for you.
  3. In the To: box you have to write someone’s email address. If you start typing someone’s email address, usually the rest will show up. You can ask for the email address of your grandmother or someone else close to you.
  4. Click in the box next to where it says Subject. In the subject line you can write “Hello” or “From” and then your name.
  5. Click in the big box where you are to write your letter. Write something nice. Finish with your name.
  6. Click on “Send.”
  7. Find out what your parents’ rules are for using email.
  8. Remember not to give out your email address except with permission.

Week 19

  1. Social networking sites: Your parents may use Facebook or another website like it. You are not allowed to have your own account on most sites like that until you are thirteen. (My teens only use social media for work.)
  2. Find out the rules of the house about using it.
  3. Even though sites like that are supposed to be just for your friends, more of what you put on there is for the public than you realize.
  4. Don’t share anything that isn’t okay for the whole world to know!
  5. Don’t put on your phone number and other personal information, just as you wouldn’t on other places on the internet.
  6. Don’t tag your photos unless your parents tell you to.

Week 20

  1. Open your computer’s word processing program. Maybe it’s called Word or Wordpad.
  2. Type your name.
  3. Learn how to click “save.”
  4. Find the folder with your name on it.
  5. Type your name in for the name of the file, the document, the thing you are saving.
  6. Click on “save.”
  7. Type your full name on the page now.
  8. Click on “save.” Now you don’t have to name it. It already knows.

Week 21

  1. Find the folder with your name on it.
  2. Click on it to open it.
  3. Find the document with your name on it.
  4. Click on it to open it. It should open Word or whatever your word processing program is. Do you see your name? Then you followed all the directions.
  5. Type a sentence.
  6. Click on “save.”
  7. Click on “file” in the top left corner.
  8. Find the word “close” and click on it. Your document, the page you were writing on, is gone.
  9. Now click on “open.”
  10. Find the document with your name on it.
  11. Click on it to open it.
  12. Click on the red X in the corner to close the whole program.

Week 22

  1. Find the folder with your name on it.
  2. Find the document with your name on it.
  3. Click on it.
  4. Click on “open.”
  5. Now practice changing the font. Change the font name and now type something. It’s okay if it’s crazy typing.
  6. Now change the font size. Make the number bigger. Now type.
  7. Change the font and size lots of times and experiment.

Week 23

  1. Find the document folder with your name on it and double click on it to open it.
  2. Find the document with your name on it to open it.
  3. Click in the top left corner of the page.
  4. Hit enter a few times.
  5. Now type a title for your page. You can call it your name if you like.
  6. Now click on the center button. There should be three buttons with lots of lines on them. They are showing lines of words lined up to the left, to the right and in the center. You want your title in the center. See if you can get it in the center.
  7. Now highlight your title. Click and drag your cursor over your title.
  8. Choose a different color for your title.
  9. Now move down and click in the rest of your typing below.
  10. Click on the left and right buttons and watch what happens.
  11. Now change the color of those words.

Week 24

  1. See if you remember how to open your file we’ve been working on. It should be called by your name and be in a folder with your name on it.
  2. Click anywhere on the page and find where it says “Insert.” You are going to insert a picture. You can insert clip art that comes with your program. Or you can insert from a “file,” which means a picture you have saved on your computer. Try inserting both kinds. After you click on “insert,” you’ll have to choose which picture. If you double click on it or click on “open,” it should appear in your file. Use what’s on your computer already. We’re not going to get any other pictures onto your computer right now.
  3. When you are done, make sure you save your file.

Week 25

  1. Today you will print your document.
  2. Open the folder with your name on it. Open your document with your name on it. Ask someone to show you how to print on your computer. Make sure the printer is turned on and has paper.
  3. Always ask permission before printing something.

Weeks 26 – 36

  1. You can do Thinking on your computer day, or you can play around on your word processing program and create new documents.

Donate/Say Thanks

Week 37 Congratulations on finishing Computer 1! Now you can move on to Computer 2.