20 techie problems every student can fix

Jacqui Murray

IMS Expert on websites/online content, tech advice and computer support.

Jacqui is the editor of a technology curriculum for K-fifth grade and author of two technology training books for middle school. She wrote Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy midshipman. She is webmaster for five blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice book reviewer, a Cisco blogger, a columnist for Examiner.com, and a weekly contributor to Write Anything. Currently, she’s editing a techno-thriller for her agent that should be out this summer. Contact Jacqui at her writing office, WordDreams, or her tech lab, Ask a Tech Teacher.

If you’re interested in technology textbooks for K-5, visit Structured Learning. You’ll find the tech curriculum Jacqui Murray and hundreds of schools across the nation use.

Follow @askatechteacher

LinkedIn: Jacqui Murray

Website: askatechteacher.wordpress.com Email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

In schools, there are twenty problems that cause about eighty percent of the tech stoppages. I’m going to tell you what those are and how to solve them [using a Windows operated system]. Trust me, they’re easier than you think to correct. I routinely teach them to children and then they teach their parents.

I’ll tell you the problem first, then why it generally occurs, and finally, the most common solution to fix it:

Deleted a file

Why: By accident or changed my mind                 
What to do: Open Recycle Bin; right-click—restore

Can’t exit a program

Why: Can’t find the X or Quit tool. This happens with young children’s programs and those pesky internet ads that marketers don’t want you to be able to exit
What to do: Alt+F4 works 95% of the time. Try that.

Can’t find Word

Why: Shortcut moved, was deleted by accident or became inactive
What to do: Right-click on desktop—select ‘New’—“Word Document”

Keyboard doesn’t work

Why: Lost the connection                                             
What to do: First check to be sure it actually isn’t working by pushing the ‘Num Lock’ on the right side. Does the ‘Num Lock’ light go on/off? If it does, the problem is something other than the keyboard. If it does, try this: Re-plug cord into back of tower or reboot

Mouse doesn’t work

Why: Lost the connection                                             
What to do: Move it around to see if the cursor moves. If it doesn’t, re-plug cord into back or reboot

Start button is gone

Why: Task bar disappeared                                         
What to do: Push Windows button in the lower right corner of the keyboard

No sound

Why: Mute is on; Volume is down; headphones are unplugged
What to do: Unmute the sound or turn it up from the lower right corner of the screen; plug headphones in; reboot

Do you notice how often I say reboot? Sometimes, the computer simply gets confused and drops actions out of the queue which means they stop working. All you have to do is restart the system to get things back to normal.

Can’t find a file

Why: Saved wrong, moved                                          
What to do: Push Start button—Start search; when you find it, take note of where it is. Better yet, resave in a location you will remember

Menu command grayed out

Why: You’re in another command                            
What to do: Push escape 3 times. This gets you out of whatever you were working on and makes the command you’d like to use available

Advertisement

{googleAds}<script type="text/javascript"><!--
google_ad_client = "ca-pub-9940670887654728";
/* Expert Articles 468x60 */
google_ad_slot = "7545621260";
google_ad_width = 468;
google_ad_height = 60;
//-->
</script>
<script type="text/javascript"
src="http://pagead2.googlesyndication.com/pagead/show_ads.js">
</script>{/googleAds}

What’s today’s date?

Why: You forgot!                                                             
What to do: Hover over the clock in the lower right corner; if you’re in Word, start to type the date and it will prompt you with the current date. Another way to enter the date if you’re in word is with the shortkey Shift+Alt+D

Taskbar gone

Why: Student interference         
What to do: Push the Windows button on the keyboard (between Ctrl and Alt on the left side). If it’s been hidden, drag the top border up to expose it

Taskbar was moved

Why: Student interference                                           
What to do: Click on an open part of the taskbar and drag it to the bottom of screen (or wherever you prefer it to be)

Desktop icons messed up

Why: Student interference; you added more icons and now everything’s confused         
What to do: Right click on screen—select ‘Sort by’ and select the method you’d like the icons arranged (name, type, etc.)

Computer frozen

Why: Mouse frozen; keyboard frozen, dialogue box open                                   
What to do: Check solutions in this list. If nothing works, reboot

Program frozen

Why: Dialog box open; not selected on taskbar                                                          
What to do: Look around the screen until you find a dialogue box open. It’s probably asking for input. Once you supply the answer, it will close and your program will work again. Clear the dialog box. Or, the program may be blinking on the taskbar because it accidentally fell asleep down there. Click the program on taskbar to reactivate

I erased my document/text

Why: Ooops                                                                       
What to do: Ctrl+Z

Screen says “Ctrl-Alt-Del”

Why: You rebooted                                                         
What to do: Hold down Ct+Alt—then push Delete. This will either bring you to the log-in screen or to the desktop

Program closed down

Why: Ooops                                                                       
What to do: Is it open on the taskbar?  If so—click on it; if not, reopen program—see if the right sidebar shows that it saved a back-up and select that to open

Tool bar missing at top of www

Why: Pushing F11 key                                                    
What to do: Push F11 key

Toolbar missing in MS Office (2003)

Why: Closed by accident                                               
What to do: Right click in toolbar area; select missing toolbar

Register for free to continue reading
Registration is a free and easy way to support us.
When you register, you'll join a grassroots community where you can:
• Enjoy unlimited access to articles
• Get recommendations tailored to your interests
• Attend virtual events with our leading contributors
Register Now
Login

Latest stories

  • How to handle stress while teaching in a foreign country
    How to handle stress while teaching in a foreign country

    Teaching English in a foreign country is likely to be one of the most demanding experiences you'll ever have. It entails relocating to a new country, relocating to a new home, and beginning a new career, all of which are stressful in and of themselves, but now you're doing it all at once. And you'll have to converse in a strange language you may not understand.

  • Is Learning Fun for You, Teacher?
    Is Learning Fun for You, Teacher?

    Over the weekend, my family of five went to an Orlando theme park, and I decided we should really enjoy ourselves by purchasing an Unlimited Quick Queue pass. It was so worth the money! We rode every ride in the park at least twice, but one ride required us to ride down a rapidly flowing river, which quenched us with water. It was incredible that my two-year-old was laughing as well. We rode the Infinity Falls ride four times in one day—BEST DAY EVER for FAMILY FUN in the Sun! The entire experience was epic, full of energizing emotions and, most importantly, lots of smiles. What made this ride so cool was that the whole family could experience it together, the motions were on point, and the water was the icing on the cake. It had been a while since I had that type of fun, and I will never forget it.

  • Free recycling-themed resources for KS1 and KS2
    Free recycling-themed resources for KS1 and KS2

    The Action Pack is back for the start of the brand new school year, just in time for Recycle Week 2021 on 20 - 26 September, to empower pupils to make the world a better and more sustainable place. The free recycling-themed resources are designed for KS1 and KS2 and cover the topics of Art, English, PSHE, Science and Maths and have been created to easily fit into day-to-day lesson planning.

  • Inspire your pupils with Emma Raducanu
    Inspire your pupils with Emma Raducanu

    Following the exceptional performance from British breakthrough star Emma Raducanu, who captured her first Grand Slam at the US Open recently, Emmamania is already inspiring pupils aged 4 - 11 to get more involved in tennis - and LTA Youth, the flagship
    programme from The LTA, the governing body of tennis in Britain, has teachers across the country covered.

  • 5 ways to boost your school's eSafety
    5 ways to boost your school's eSafety

    eSafety is a term that constantly comes up in school communities, and with good reason. Students across the world are engaging with technology in ways that have never been seen before. This article addresses 5 beginning tips to help you boost your school’s eSafety. 

  • Tackling inequality in EdTech
    Tackling inequality in EdTech

    We have all been devastated by this pandemic that has swept the world in a matter of weeks. Schools have rapidly had to change the way they operate and be available for key workers' children. The inequalities that have long existed in communities and schools are now being amplified by the virus.

  • EdTech review & The Curriculum Lab
    EdTech review &amp; The Curriculum Lab

    The world is catching up with a truth that we’ve championed at Learning Ladders for the last 5 years - that children’s learning outcomes are greatly improved by teachers, parents and learners working in partnership. 

  • Reducing primary to secondary transition stress
    Reducing primary to secondary transition stress

    As school leaders grapple with the near impossible mission to start bringing more students into schools from 1st June, there are hundreds of thousands of Year 6 pupils thinking anxiously about their move to secondary school.

  • Generation Z and online tutoring: natural bedfellows?
    Generation Z and online tutoring: natural bedfellows?

    The K-12 online tutoring market is booming around the world, with recent research estimating it to grow by 12% per year over the next five years, a USD $60bn increase. By breaking down geographic barriers and moving beyond the limits of local teaching expertise, online tutoring platforms are an especially valuable tool for those looking to supplement their studies in the developing world, and students globally are increasingly signing up to online tuition early on in their secondary education schooling. 

  • Employable young people or human robots?
    Employable young people or human robots?

    STEM skills have been a major focus in education for over a decade and more young people are taking science, technology, engineering, and maths subjects at university than ever before, according to statistics published by UCAS. The downside of this is that the UK is now facing a soft skills crisis and the modern world will also require children to develop strong social skills as the workplaces are transformed by technology. 

In order to make our website better for you, we use cookies!

Some firefox users may experience missing content, to fix this, click the shield in the top left and "disable tracking protection"