|Grade span:||6 to 12|
|Duration:||Begin with 6-8 sessions|
Description:In this lesson, students learn how computers are put together and operate by repairing and refurbishing computers donated by the community. They take part in an instructor-led program, during which they learn the basics of computer assembly, how to diagnose and solve hardware problems, and software installation. They can give their "recycled" computers to a community group or individuals in need, or keep them for themselves. The lesson connects to various curriculum content areas, with activities that involve reading and writing, math, science, technology, and engineering and design.
- Learn basic computer hardware and software components
- Learn about the operation of computer technology systems
- Learn to disassemble and rebuild computers, setup and run a printer, upgrade hardware, identify and correct basic hardware problems, and load and run software programs
- Used computer hardware components and peripherals that need to be refurbished (these can be donated by the community)
- Curriculum that takes students through all disassembly and reassembly steps and learning of software applications. For example, see Dell TechKnow.
- Storage facility and work center or dedicated classroom
Preparation:Instructors should determine students' reading, writing, and computer skills and gauge their commitment to complete a lengthy program in advance. Instructors should also have knowledge about computers and software and should enjoy working with youth who are interested in computers. If the instructor is not skilled and experienced in computer recycling, he or she should locate a staff member or volunteer who is able to assist in the lesson.
- Find a source of donated computers either in the community or from the local school district.
- Find a storage facility as well as a work center.
- Design your program. (Start small!) For examples, see the Resources page Resources page.
- Recruit volunteer helpers and other interested parties.
- Gain commitment on the design and structure of the program.
- Design curriculum and instructional materials.
What to Do:
- Recruit students
- Carry out the program
- Reflect and assess outcomes
Evaluate (Outcomes to look for):
- Student understanding of how to evaluate, repair, and refurbish donated computers
- Student understanding of the benefits of recycling old computers
- Authentic learning, problem solving, and real-life experiences
- Practical application of reading and writing, math calculations, technology, engineering, and science skills
Click this link to see additional learning goals, grade-level benchmarks, and standards covered in this lesson.