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Invite your class to step into the shoes of a travel agent and teach them how to use spreadsheets to operate a flight booking system

It’s fair to say that spreadsheets are not the most exciting of computer-related activities – therefore we can often have a struggle on our hands getting a class of children motivated to learn about them. Using an engaging and real-life context can help with this. These activities focus on a travel agent theme – getting the children to develop and operate their own flight booking system.

The activities enhance the usual ‘shopping model’ spreadsheets by introducing children to a greater range of variables and larger numbers. The context also has a number of cross-curricular links with geography.

Setting up

In order to work on these activities, the children will need to be familiar with the basics of entering data into databases and simple spreadsheet programs. They will also need to be confident working with larger numbers and be able to use coordinate references to locate cells in a grid. The Upper Juniors need to have had some experience of using a spreadsheet and knowledge of simple formulae.

The children will need access to spreadsheet software such as Textease Spreadsheet, or Microsoft Excel. The flight booking spreadsheet will need to be prepared in advance and saved as a template. Activity sheet 6 details each step to creating your own flight booking template, with accompanying screenshots to help you track your progress.

Start by entering the countries Add details such as distance and cost Format the cells containing information

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