fifth grade / first grade / fourth grade / K-5 Tech training / Kindergarten / problem solving / second grade / third grade

Twenty-five Techie Problems Every Student Can Fix

Problem Solving 101

Problem Solving 101

The Number One reason–according to students–why their computer doesn’t work is… It’s broken. Can I move to a different computer??? They never look inward first. I often wonder what happens at home. As a tech teacher, I know that half the problems that stop students short in their tech lessons are the same few. Once they’ve learned the following twenty-five trouble shooting solutions, they’ll be able to solve more than half of their ongoing problems.


When they can’t double click that tiny little icon to open the program (because their fine motor skills aren’t up to it), teach them the ‘enter’ solution. When somehow (who knows how) the task bar disappears, show them how to bring it up with the ‘flying windows’ key. When their monitor doesn’t work, go through all possible solutions together (monitor power on, computer power on, plugged into duplex, etc.)

Once they know the solution, I play Socrates and make them come up with it when faced with the problem. I reinforce the solutions by having them teach each other when called for. By the end of the year, they’ve got all twenty-one, and we can move on to more complicated issues.

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–from 55 Technology Projects for the Digital Classroom. Preview available at publisher’s website

Jacqui Murray has been teaching K-8 technology for 15 years. She is the editor of a K-8 technology curriculumK-8 keyboard curriculumK-8 Digital Citizenship curriculum, and creator of technology training books for how to integrate technology in education. She is the author of the popular Building a Midshipman, the story of her daughter’s journey from high school to United States Naval Academy. She is webmaster for six blogs, an Amazon Vine Voice book reviewer, Editorial Review Board member for Journal for Computing TeachersCisco guest blogger, a columnist for Examiner.comIMS tech expert, and a weekly contributor to TeachHUB. Currently, she’s editing a techno-thriller that should be out to publishers next summer. Contact Jacqui at her writing office or her tech lab, Ask a Tech Teacher.


29 thoughts on “Twenty-five Techie Problems Every Student Can Fix

  1. Pingback: What Do You Think is the Hardest Techie Problem? « Ask a Tech Teacher

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  3. Hi I reach this site by mistake when i was searching yahoo for this issue, I must say your site is really helpful I also love the theme, its amazing!. I dont have that much time to read all your post at the moment but I have bookmarked it and also add your RSS feeds. I will be back in a day or two. thanks for a great site.

  4. I would really like a copy of the troubleshooting chart. It’s too small to read on the post and I can’t see to enlarge it enough and be able to read the text. Is it any of you digital materials?

    • Hi Marilyn, I sent it to your email address. I can usually get my students through 90% of these by the end of 5th grade. It makes a huge difference in classroom management.

  5. Thanks for sharing these ideas. Could I also obtain a copy of the list? You’ve had many requests for your list – you might want to consider posting it as a publicly shared Google doc.

    Thank you for all you share on this blog. It is an awesome resource! 🙂

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  10. Hi Jacqui, thanks so much for sharing these hints. I train seniors in basic computer skills, and this sheet makes a great handout. I’ve tried clicking the link you posted to Scribd to download it, but it says the page cannot be found. Are you able to email/post a new link?
    Thanks heaps!

    • My apologies for taking so long to answer you, Athina. I’ve finally fixed the link. Now, if you click the image, it’ll take you to a Google Docs which you can save to your own account. Of course, you must have a Google account (but who doesn’t?)

      Let me know how it works.

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