Computer Skills Curriculum

Word Processing Lesson Plan

Title: Eyes on North Carolina

Other Curriculum Objectives that can be addressed by this lesson plan
English Language Arts: 1.1, 2.1, 2.3; Computer Skills: 2.2; Information Skills 1.4, 1.5, 2.1, 2.2; Social Studies (Gr. 4) 12.1

Grade: 4

Competency 2.2: Use a word processing program to edit a paragraph and save changes.

Measure 2.2.1: Given a paragraph on a North Carolina historical site, use editing techniques (e.g., arrow keys and delete, search and replace) to change every "NC" to "North Carolina" and then save the edited paragraph.

Materials Needed: Reference materials found in the media center; map outline of North Carolina on bulletin board; general classroom materials (chart paper or overhead projector); word processing software and printer; Eyes on North Carolina worksheet and blank data diskettes.

Time: One to two, 30-40 minute class sessions; one, 30-40 minute session in the media lab; one, 30-40 minute session in the computer lab.

Terms: word processing,find/search, replace, print, save, edit, delete




    Teacher Preparation

  • Prepare a data diskette with NC sites for the students to use for the measure (or use the data file available for this lesson).
  • Duplicate a sufficient number of diskettes for each pair of students to use at the computer or plan how the data diskettes will be shared in the computer lab.

    With the Media Professional

  • Review the pre-activities and the assigned task.
  • Identify relevant sources and discuss the best way to find the types of information requested.
  • Assist students as necessary with their research.

    With the Students

  • Have a brainstorming session. Using chart paper (or transparencies and an overhead), have students list names of historical sites that may be found in North Carolina.
  • Generate a list of questions for the student groups to use as an organizer as they conduct research on their historical site. (For example, why is this historical site important?)
  • Divide the students into cooperative groups (3-4 students per group) and assign one historical site to each group. One student will be the leader, one the researcher, one the recorder, and one the group reporter. The group leader could be responsible for organizing and directing team activities. The group researcher could be responsible for locating materials for the group paragraph. The recorder would take notes and the reporter would summarize and report activities to the teacher and/or the class.
  • Provide students with an opportunity to visit the media center and to use available resources in the classroom to answer the questions.


  1. Direct students to use the answers to their questions to write a paragraph about their historical site in their groups. Tell them that they should use the words "NC" at least twice in their paragraph.
  2. Instruct student groups to do peer editing and make corrections to the paragraphs.
  3. Direct each student to enter the group paragraph and save it on a diskette. One alternative would be to have the recorder enter the paragraph and let students save it to individual diskettes.
  4. Have students change every "NC" to "North Carolina" in the paragraph, save, then print the paragraph.
  5. Have students (in cooperative groups) mark on the NC map the location of their historical site.
  6. Have students present reports to the class on each groupís historical site.

    Extensions/ Alternatives:

  1. Have students create individual maps in addition to the class map (using a computer graphics program or drawing a map by hand).
  2. Have student teams create a class report telling about several of the historical sites, using word processing software.
  3. Have students illustrate and bind group reports in a class notebook on NC historical sites.
  4. Provide students the opportunity to communicate (via mail and/or telecomputing) with students in schools near the historical sites researched.
  5. Have students write for additional information from the Chamber of Commerce in the cities of historical sites.
  6. Choose other topics (e.g., NC symbols, NC events, famous people, sports figures) to research.


Using a word processing program, have pairs of students load the paragraph on a North Carolina historical site. Using the functions of their word processor, direct students to replace each "NC" with "North Carolina." Monitor students' performance as they use arrow keys and delete or find/search and replace functions to change the words "NC" to "North Carolina" their paragraph. Reteach "editing skills" and provide additional practice for those students experiencing difficulty.

Bulletin Board: