Making Spreadsheets Fun

Today I started a new project/unit of ICT work with my year 8 classes – Spreadsheets.  Just say the word “Spreadsheets” to students and they immediately start yawning and fall asleep!  So I wanted to make today’s lesson FUN!

I started off with a Captain Pugwash Powerpoint using a cell reference grid (I have attached this resource), and some formula questions for a whole class starter.  This engaged everyone of all abilities.  Then I handed out a sheet containing cell references (resource attached), and asked to students to choose any colour and shade in the cell reference numbers, (which spelt ICT, obviously!). Some students initially struggled with this, but all were again totally engaged.  The next task was to create their own word/letter/image and write down the cell reference numbers, (they did and again all students were totally engaged).  Some students even took their spreadsheet work home to show parents!

GETTING PARENTS INVOLVED IN HOMEWORK – using WALLWISHER

I even asked students to get their parents involved in this project!  All students were asked if any of their parents/guardians or family members worked with spreadsheets, to post an anonymous comment on a Wallwisher wall, and briefly describe how they used a Spreadsheet in their job, to add a first name only and job title.  This is currently being used in the lesson to discuss “real business uses”, and demonstrate the reason for learning about Spreadsheets in school.  This project is still ongoing and you can check out post updates on the above link.  Please feel free to add your use of a Spreadsheet, to help with our class discussions.

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8 comments on “Making Spreadsheets Fun

  1. I would love to see the resources that you said were attached such as the PowerPoint and the cell reference grid. It sounds like a great lesson.

      • Ben, you will find the resources in The Box widget on the right-hand side of the webpage. You may have to access my site from home, possibility filtered from school. The Box widget is filtered at our school!

  2. Pingback: The Inaugral Ed Tech Blog Carnival | The Whiteboard Blog

  3. Would you consider placing the letters at the top and the numbers at the side so it would match a “real” spreadsheet??? I don’t know how to do all of the switching that would be involved….perhaps that’s too much of an undertaking???

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