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Quick reference for students

Managing your classes
When you log into FirstClass ED, you can access your classes, your portfolio, and your Mailbox. This is in addition to any other conferences you have been given access to.
When you open My Classes, you will see all of the classes you are enrolled in for the current semester, as well as your journal and project areas.
Double-click a class to enter. When you enter the class, you will see a list of containers in the left pane.
You may not have all of these resources. It depends on the permissions the FirstClass administrator has set for your classroom.
Use the Calendar to make note of due dates for assignments and the date of tests.
Learn more about the class calendar.
Class News
Use the Class News area to pick up important information that the teacher wants to share. This could be details about upcoming events, field trips, theme days, a class newsletter, permissions forms for parents, or anything else that the teacher feels the need to share.
Learn more about the Class News area.
Course Content
The Course Content area is your source for information for homework and assignments. You can use the information in the lessons to study for tests and to get information for assignments. From Course Content, you can see the lesson that was taught and start any assignments. Furthermore, if you missed a class, you can catch up by reading the lesson.
Learn more about following the lesson plan.
The Discussions area of each class is the perfect place for you to discuss assignments, ask questions about lessons, and share information with classmates. It is also a good place for your teacher to monitor who is participating in class discussions, as participation isn't always limited to class time.
Learn more about the Discussions area.
If there is additional information to accompany the lesson, a great web site your teacher wants to share, or if she simply wants to provide some food for thought, she may post it in the Resources area.
Learn more about the Resources area.
The Board
This is where the teacher may post urgent communications, reminders, and so on. You will see The Board each time you enter the class.
My Journals
Your My Journals area contains all of the class journals and private journals you have created. Class journals are visible to the teacher, but private journals are only visible to you.
Learn more about your My Journals area.
My Projects
Your My Projects area contains all of the project areas your teacher has set up for you. From here, you can manage the various stages of your ongoing projects.
Learn more about your My Projects area.
My Portfolio
Your portfolio contains examples of your work from all classes. From here, you can store examples of your best work along with work that demonstrates progress.
Learn more about your My Portfolio area.
Your Mailbox contains both assignments that are in progress and completed assignments.
Further, a copy of any message you send to a teacher will be stored in your Mailbox.
Searching for specific topics
You can search for a specific topic in the Class News, Course Content, or Resources area. To perform a search, click Find and specify the search criteria.
Searching for new items
You can search for any new items in the Class News, Course Content, or Resources area. To search for a new item, click Next Unread.
Searching multiple classes
In the My Classes area, you may find some search templates in the left pane. Use these to perform a search for the indicated objects. These work with one click and the list they provide is editable.

Following the lesson plan
You can use the Course Content area to  
•       view which lessons will be covered
•       take notes if you missed a class
•       view information about each lesson to help you with your assignments and to study for tests
•       receive assignments.
Viewing a lesson
The Course Content area lists the lessons the teacher has made available for you to view. Open a specific module to see the lesson and any assignments the teacher has created.

Managing assignments
All assignments are stored with your teacher. When the teacher is ready, the assignment will be made available in the Course Content area. This means that not all assignments will be available at the same time, so it is important to check for new assignments periodically.
Starting an assignment
When you open the assignment, you have the option of starting it.
To begin a new assignment
1       Open Course Content.
2       Open the assignment.
3       Click Start.
A copy of the assignment is created and stored in your Mailbox. If you don't click Start, an Assignment form is not created in your Mailbox.
Submitting an assignment
Once you start the assignment, the Start button changes to a Hand In button.
To submit an assignment:
1       Open the Mailbox.
2       Open the assignment.
3       Complete the assignment requirements.
4       Click Hand In.
After the teacher marks the assignment, it will be appear in your Mailbox with a mark.

Managing schedules
The class calendar in FirstClass ED contains due dates and dates for tests and special events. This forces you to take responsibility for your own participation in courses. This rules out concerns that you couldn't find your agenda, you forgot to bring it home, or you forgot to record the due date, because it is always online whenever you log into your account.  
Calendar entries may include additional information such as homework pages. If parents want to know what you have for homework or what is coming up, they can log into your account and look at the class calendar.
The class calendar in FirstClass ED is a FirstClass group calendar and is used the same way as other standard FirstClass calendars. You only have access to read items in the class calendar.
Learn more about FirstClass calendars.

Managing your portfolio
Your portfolio is a collection of your work that represents your performance.
Once you have decided which assignments to include in your portfolio, add them to the portfolio by dragging them from your Mailbox.
Parents can view your portfolio by logging into your account.
Sharing your portfolio
To share your portfolio, either move your My Portfolio folder into your My Shared Documents area, or create an alias in My Shared Documents to your portfolio.
To create an alias to your portfolio:
1 Select My Portfolio.
2 Right-click and choose Add to Desktop.
3 Drag the new My Portfolio into My Shared Documents.
If you do not have a My Shared Documents folder on your Desktop, choose File > Open > My Shared Documents. The folder will be automatically added to your Desktop.

Participating in discussions
Class discussions don't have to stop when the bell rings. The Discussions area of FirstClass ED lets you communicate with classmates on class topics in your own time. Here are some scenarios where you may use the Discussions area:
•       The teacher poses a question about the lesson for discussion.
•       You don't understand something in the lesson, so you post a question about it to your classmates.
•       You found a great web site related to a class topic that you want to share.
A chat room is an ideal forum for you to ask questions of the teacher and get extra help. Your teacher may set "chat hours" so you can go online at that time and ask questions. Further, your teacher may use the class chat room to host simulations and role-playing events, or present transcript-based assignments.
If the teacher uses a chat room, you can access it in the Discussions area.
Starting a discussion
To start a new discussion:
1 Open the Discussions area or the relevant area within the Discussions area..
2 Click New Message.
3 Populate the message and click Send.
Replying to a discussion
To reply to a discussion in progress:
1 Highlight the message you want to reply to.
2 Click Reply.
3 Add content and click Send.
You can also use standard messaging features like Reply with quotes. For more information about quoting original messages in replies, click here.

Receiving news
From the Class News area, information is posted in a series of messages. Parents can log into your account regularly and see what is coming up.
You only have the ability to read items in this area. To open an item, double-click it.

Using resources
FirstClass ED provides a class area called Resources. Your teacher may use this area to provide extra materials, such as
• tutorials to help you grasp concepts
• web sites where you can find more information
• practice work
• suggested readings
• advanced work to provide more of a challenge
• extra credit work
• guidelines for parents to help you learn.
You only have the ability to read items in this area. To open an item in this area, double-click it.

Managing your journals
FirstClass ED provides a personal area called My Journals. You can use this area to create personal journals (located in the bottom pane) and class journals (located in the top pane), and contribute to them. Your teacher likely has ideas about how you should use your class journal. Consider creating personal journals also. Use a personal journal to
• record your thoughts
• make lists
• practice your writing
• write stories, poetry, articles
• store information you gather from the Internet
• store recipes, directions, or anything else that is important to you.
Creating a class journal
To create a class journal:
1 Open My Classes.
2 Click the class you want to create the journal for.
3 Click New Class Journal.
The journal is automatically created in your My Journals area and named the same name as the corresponding class.
To open the journal, simply double-click it.
Creating a personal journal
To create a personal journal:
1 Open My Classes > My Journals.
2 Click New Personal Journal.
3 Select the template you wish to use.
This determines your background.
4 Start typing.
When you try to close the document, you will be prompted to give it a name.
Adding content to a journal
You can add content to a journal just as you would to any other FirstClass document.
To add content to an existing journal:
1 Open the journal.
2 Start typing.
Learn more about editing content.

Managing your projects
FirstClass ED provides a personal area called My Projects. You can use this area to manage class projects for yourself or a group, and participate in projects you are a member of.
Your My Projects area has many uses, depending on your project needs. Consider using the project area to:
• schedule meetings and milestones
• conduct meetings
• brainstorm
• manage tasks
• collect information
• compile the project
• create a presentation.
Your teacher creates your project area and adds you as a member of that area. When you are ready to use the project area, simply open it. If you are working with group members, they have the same access to the project area.

Taking tests
You can use the Online Tests application to  
•       take tests online
•       get immediate feedback
•       have your results emailed to you.
Loading the test
The Online Tests application lets you take tests online. Your teacher will give you the information you need to start the test, including the Grade, Class, and Test Code.
1 Open the Online Test tool.
2 Enter the requested information (Grade, Subject, Test Code).
Your teacher will give you this information.
3 Click Load Test.
4 Follow the instructions on the screen.
The About this test area on the right side of the screen lists test details you need to know. The information you see may be different from this view depending on the criteria your teacher has set for your test.
Use the Next/Previous buttons to navigate the questions.
Skipping a question
Your teacher will tell you if you are allowed to skip questions or go back and change your answers.
To skip a question, click Next to bypass it, and then click Previous to return to it at a later time.
Changing an answer
To change an answer, click Previous to return to the question and change your answer. A counter on the screen will tell you how many attempts you have left at the question.
Finishing the test
Click Finish when you have completed the test. If your teacher has set the criteria to show your results, you will see your mark at the end of the test. These results may also (or instead) be emailed to you.