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Outlook Express in the Classroom is produced by ACT360 Media Ltd.
in conjunction with Microsoft Corporation.
Copyright 1998. All rights reserved.

Astromatix! The worst thing about Planet Globulus is that it can get awfully lonely. No friends to meet after class. Not even a mother who calls to complain about her weeds. Sniff! That's why we should keep in touch by e-mail when I return home. So let's start with the basics.

Creating a message
With Outlook Express, you don't need pen and paper to write a message. You can set-up a new message area with a simple click of the Compose Message button.

    1. On the toolbar, click the Compose Message button. A new message window will appear.

    Create new messages using this button

    2. In the To box, type the e-mail address of the person you are sending the message to. For example, Mary@school.com.

    3. In the Subject box, type the subject of the message. For example, if the message is about an upcoming science fair, type Science Fair.

    Type your message in the message area.

    4. Type your message in the message area.

    5. On the toolbar, click the Send button. Depending on the connection you have to the Internet, a message box may appear telling you that the e-mail message is being moved to the Outbox. If it does appear, simply click OK.

    The Send button will zip your message to the Outbox
    6. To send the message from the Outbox, click the Send and Receive button.

    The Send and Receive button will deliver your messages into cyberspace

Do you ever have something to say to a whole group of people all at once? With Outlook Express, you can make grand announcements without getting sweaty hands or jittery knees.

Sending messages to more than one person
You can use e-mail to plan your weekends at the Intergalactic Rodeo or discuss ideas for the school science fair. All you need to know is how to send the same message to more than one person.

    1. In the To box, type the e-mail addresses of all the recipients. Separate each address with a semicolon. For example: mary@school.com; james@school.edu; terry@school.com

Use a semi-colon to separate each address

Sending copies to other people

What happens if Terry wants to raise attack bunny rabbits for the science fair? It's a dangerous project and you should warn him, and others, of the hazards. The proper way to do this with e-mail is to send a message addressed to Terry and send carbon copies to everyone else.

There are two different types of copies: carbon copies (Cc) and blind carbon copies (Bcc). You decide which one is better for you.

Carbon copies (Cc)
When you send a carbon copy, the e-mail addresses of the people receiving it appear on the message for all recipients to see.

To send a carbon copy:

    1. Type the e-mail addresses of the recipients in the Cc box.
You can send carbon copies to more than one person

If there is more than one address, separate them using a semi-colon (;).

Blind Carbon copies (Bcc)
When you send a blind carbon copy, the e-mail addresses of the people receiving it do not appear on the e-mail message. This means the e-mail recipients will not know who else has received the message. Blind Carbon copies are sneaky that way, so use them sparingly.

To send a blind carbon copy:

    1. Type the e-mail addresses of the recipients in the Bcc box.

Use blind carbon copies sparingly

What if you're late for an appointment? Or maybe you've run out of computer time? Fuzzlogica! You don't need to worry about finishing that message you've started. You can save it for later.

Saving a message so you can finish it later
Here's how to keep a work-in-progress in a safe place:

    1. In the window that you are composing your message, go to the File menu and select Save.

Use this command to save a message

A message box will appear to tell you that the message has been saved to your Drafts folder.

Retrieving a saved message
When you have time to finish your message, you will want to retrieve it using these steps:

    1. On the Outlook Bar, click the Drafts icon. A list of message titles will appear.

    Click this icon to open your Drafts folder

    2. Find the message you want to work on and double-click it. Your message will open in a new window.

    3. Complete your message, then click the Send button.

Sending the message later
You don't need to be connected to the Internet to compose a message. With Outlook Express you can write a message while you are "offline" and send it later when you are online. If you are using a dial-up line, you will want to pay close attention. Composing your e-mail while you are offline will save you valuable connection time and lots of astro-bucks!

    1. Compose your e-mail message.

    2. On the File menu, click Send Later.

Store your messages in the Outbox with this command

Your message will be saved in the Outbox.

You may want to compose several messages and save them in your Outbox before connecting to the Internet. When you are online again, click the Send and Receive button and your messages will be delivered all at once.

What's the best part of e-mail? Checking it, of course! You never know who or where an e-mail may come from. Is it from a student in your Block C, English class? Maybe it's your best friend who is trekking through Nepal. Who knows? Perhaps the e-mail you receive won't even come from this planet...

Opening your Inbox
If you want to check your messages, plant your eyes on your Inbox folder. This is where Outlook Express places your incoming e-mail. Here's how to open your Inbox:

    1. On the Outlook bar, click the Inbox icon.

This is how to open your Inbox

Checking for new messages
If you want to check for new messages, simply click the Send and Receive button on the Outlook bar. Outlook Express will download your e-mail and show you a list of subject titles in your Inbox.

The Send and Receive button will deliver your messages into cyberspace

Reading your mail
You can read your messages using a small preview pane, or in a separate message window. If you receive lots of e-mail, you will probably use the preview pane to sort interesting messages from a nebula of junk mail. For really important or long messages, you can open a separate window that will give you more reading room.

To view a message in the preview pane:

    1. In the message list, click the subject line of the message you want to read. The text of the message will appear in the preview pane located beneath the list.

Check out the preview pane!

To view the message in a separate window:

    1. In the message list, double-click the message you want to read. A separate window for the message will open.

Double click to open the message
    2. When you are finished reading the message, close it by clicking the button in the top right-hand corner of the window.

Picture this. You receive an e-mail asking if you would like a trip to captivating Planet Globulus or the slime pits of Gratzchuk. The answer is obvious, but you should still send a reply. In most cases, people who send you e-mail also expect a speedy response. On that note, let me know if Thursday is a good day for your visit to Globulus. I need to know soon since teleporter trips must be booked in advance.

Replying to an e-mail message
With Outlook Express, replying to an e-mail message is as easy as green moon pie. All you have to do is decide who should see your reply, then click the appropriate button. Shmazzola!

These three buttons are used to create reply messages

A simple reply to the person who sent the e-mail is used most often. Here's how to reply to the author:

    1. In the message list, click the message you want to respond to. The message will be highlighted with a blue box.

    2. On the toolbar, click the Reply to Author button. A message window will open. You will see the original message in it.

    You'll use this button often

    3. In the message area, type your message.

    4. Click the Send button to transfer your message to the Outbox.

Replying to everyone who received the message
My intergalactic friends and I have been using e-mail to discuss whether icy, cold Pluto is worth visiting. To keep everyone in the conversation, we use the Reply to All button when we compose messages. This feature makes group communications a Saturnian breeze!

Here's how to add your two cents to an e-mail discussion:

    1. In the message list, click the message you want to reply to.

    2. On the toolbar, click the Reply to All button. An e-mail message window will appear.

    Everyone who received the original message will also receive your reply

    3. Write your reply, then click the Send button. All the people who received the original message will now receive your response.

Forwarding an e-mail message
What do you do when an e-mail message is so interesting, you really MUST share it with others? With Outlook Express, you don't need to copy and paste the message into one of your own. You can simply forward the original message to other e-mail addresses. Here's how:

    1. In the message list, click the message you want to forward.

    2. On the toolbar, click the Forward button. A forward message window will appear.

    Forwarding a message is the cyberspace equivalent to passing a message in class!
Note: The original subject line will appear in the Subject box, along with the abbreviation Fw:
    3. In the To box, type the recipient's e-mail address.

    4. You can add your comments by typing in the message area.

    5. On the toolbar, click the Send button. Once the e-mail is sent, the Forward Message window will close.

As a teacher, you already know the importance of good spelling. Afterall, what would the kids think if they found a spelling mistake (gulp!) in one of your e-mails. You can plead that it's a typo, but would they really believe you? Thanks to out-of-this world, space-age technology, you don't have to plead your case in front of your students. Whew!

Activating the Spell-Checker
You can set up Outlook Express so it will automatically check the spelling in all your messages.

Note: The Spelling command may not be available if you do not have Microsoft Office 95 or 97 programs (e.g. Microsoft Word, Microsoft Excel, or Microsoft PowerPoint) installed on your computer.

    1. In the Outlook Window, click the Tools menu, then click Options. The Options dialog box will open.

Select Options from the Tools menu

    2. Select the Spelling tab.

Click the tab marked Spelling

    3. Under the heading General options, click the check box next to "Always check spelling before sending".

Place a check-mark in the box

    4. Click OK.

Click OK when you're done

You're set! Outlook Express will automatically check the spelling in your messages everytime you select the Send button. If this astromatic program finds an error, a Spelling dialog box will open and suggest different spelling options.

This is the Spell-Checker in action

Click the Change button to change the spelling. Click Ignore to keep the original.

E-mail Etiquette

Like keeping your elbows off the dinner table, watching your e-mail Ps and Qs is essential. Here's an excerpt from Ms. Manners E-mail Society Column to illustrate some e-mail don'ts.

Daaarlings, it's that time of year again. Yes, yes. I've compiled my list of worst-mannered members for your reading pleasure. If you don't see your name on this list, go ahead and count your blessings that you've been the epitome of e-mail grace. If you do see your name here, don't be offended. Just get your act together and avoid next year's list.

Ta ta for now,
Ms. Manners

Mr. CAPs Lock
Being heard is very important to Mr. Lock. Maybe that's why he shouts at everyone by typing in all CAPITAL letters. This rather annoying habit has not endeared him to e-mail society. Perhaps someone should tell Mr. CAPs Lock that a more appropriate way to emphasize one's words is using asterisks like *this*.

Miss Spelled
Don't let first impressions fool you. Miss Spelled is actually quite a bright gal. You just have to look beyond the missing vowels and misplaced consonants to find her. Unfortunately, this may take some time and patience since what she says is often confusing. Did she care for fair weather? Or dare to wear leather? With Miss Spelled, one can never be sure.

Ms. R. U. Thar
Despite her charming disposition and wit, Ms. R. U. Thar is not very popular among the e-mail elite. It started when Ms. Thar ignored Didi De Lite's e-mail invitation to "the party" of the year--a serious faux pas. Then, she didn't attend Prince Charming's poetry reading. Ms. Thar claims she didn't snub Didi and the Prince on purpose--she just didn't check her e-mail in time. Tsk, tsk, we all know that checking e-mail regularly is a must.

Mr. Verbose
No doubt, Mr. Verbose is one of the most eloquent gents you'll ever meet. But as well-versed as he is, Mr. Verbose has a tendency to wander off topic in his e-mails. For instance, is it really necessary to give everyone a play-by-play of his triple root canal, or the removal of his ingrown toenail? Ahem...a short and simple "I won't be available" would have sufficed.

Miss Mimi Broadcast
Someone take the Reply To All button away from Miss Broadcast. That woman doesn't know how to use the function sparingly. Take for instance the incident with last month's E-mail Society newsletter. Mimi disagreed with the editor's choice of stories. However, instead of using the Reply to Sender button to send a message to the editor, she used the Reply To All key and spammed all 50 people on the mailing list. How uncouth!

Mrs. No-Title
Wait. What is the venerable Mrs. No-Title doing on this list of e-mail rogues? Doesn't she check her e-mail regularly and write succinct messages? Yes, she is the perfect e-mail citizen--except for her habit of not including a message subject. When she does remember to type a title, she will use an eternally vague, "Hello" regardless of how urgent the message is to the recipient. Hello, Mrs. No-Title. Please be specific with your subject titles.