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I'm going to be doing free computer classes for our church. It won't necessarily be for the church people, but for the people in the community we are trying to reach. I feel it will be necessary for some to learn how to use computers since some do not know how and will have to find out how to get a decent job (even receptionists need to know basics about computers).
So here's my question to all of you. If you were going to get taught something about the computer, what would you want to know? For example, how not to get a virus on your PC? How about how to email? If you wanted to learn Word, for example what is it you'd like to know? How to sell on eBay?
For people in the wrkforce - learn WORD and a spreadsheet...
Otherwise - definitely email - and maybe a tour around as to what the net has to offer - and how to search, search engines, etc. Then maybe how to find free software, etc.
Depending on your class's ability (which you will determine when they are in front of you), you may wish to start with things as basic as how to plug them in. Why do some peripherals need power cords to the wall, and some to the box?
I agree with both of the previous posts...start with the very basics, explain the jargon (what's a USB port, Mini USB, what do the terms memory, RAM, and ROM mean when you're considering purchasing a new computer? Remember, the questions may seem stupid to you, but this may be the first time these people have ever even had a chance/reason to ask.
E-mail is essential, as is Word, and Excell for the working world.
I don't know how much time you have (one class, or once a week?), but it might be a fun exercise to give them common texting acronyms (btw, lol, omg) and let them try to figure them out for homework!
I bet you will be dealing with a variety of skill levels. Your first question, to see how skilled your class is, would be to ask, "who knows how to turn on a computer?" You may very well have someone who does not know. From there ask questions to get to know your students and their level of skills and try to make your work plans around the various skill levels. Definately explain the jargon as mentioned and keep notes on who knows what skill level.
You are a brave soul. Good luck!