Trina L Short (trinalin) wrote,
Trina L Short

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Portable Apps

This Sunday I'll be heading North East to Wooster for B-WISER Science Camp for Girls once again. There was a fear that we wouldn't even be having the camp this summer - enrollment is down big time. We have 30, maybe 32 girls, signed up now, however, so we're going to do the camp, but with half the staff we usually use. As one of the senior teachers (heh, I still think that's funny - I'm younger than most of my coworkers at this camp, but I've been teaching there many years now) I still have a job there. Phew!

In order to accommodate the smaller staff, we're splitting the morning and afternoon up into different classes. Normally Dee and I would teach 6 sessions of physics. This year, we'll teach 3 sessions of physics in the morning, and then in the afternoon, we'll teach 3 sessions of computers. Dee is in charge of the physics in the morning with me as her assistant. And I'm in charge of computers in the afternoon with Dee as my assistant.

Computers, eh? Wow, what to teach for computers? I had a lot of ideas and little time to implement them. (Wouldn't it be cool if we could do computer based labs for a week?) But what I finally settled on was getting the girls something they could use even after camp - portable applications and a little flash drive to store them on. (Thanks to the College of Wooster bookstore which is giving the camp a nice deal on 1GB flash drives!)

Monday won't actually require the portable applications - I'll be working on Internet Safety and Skeptical Searching. I haven't decided yet if we'll use Firefox portable to do the session or just have the girls use the browser that's on the lab computers we're using.

Tuesday we'll definitely get into the portable apps. I'll introduce them to the programs on their flash drives. Then Dee and I will have the girls do a lab on work, power and energy, but we won't have them do the calculations. We'll return to the computer lab and use Portable's Calc (the spreadsheet) to do the calculations. :-)

Wednesday is when I introduce them to the Gimp. Yes, there is a Gimp Portable. And it works just fine. We'll be uploading photos each night to my website of the girls and they can download some and manipulate them. Mostly I'll focus on resizing pix for webpages and presentations.

Thursday we'll return to Portable and work with Impress, the presentation program. We'll have the girls create a presentation of the pictures they worked on the day before. And best of all, they can take everything home with 'em when they go.

Friday we don't meet for classes, so that's all we'll have to teach during the week. I included some other programs which we'll put on the flash drives, including GAIM, a media player, Clam Antivirus, a PDF viewer, and Sudoku. :-)
Tags: b-wiser, computers, software
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