Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Rob Router Learns How to Communicate Again

Sharon Golden
Orange County Schools

Description

“Rob Router” Learns How to Communicate...Again! In this lesson, students configure a router, analyze a real-world scenario, troubleshoot problems with the router, apply hands-on solutions to problems, keep a detailed journal, and participate in a classroom discussion.

Objectives

Applies technology in problem solving activities, as they relate to production.

Materials

-Handouts (See Associated File), one per student
-Pencils
-5 PC workstations (with Windows OS and Hyperterminal)
-Router simulator program
-5 Series 2500 routers
-1 Ethernet switch catalyst 1900
-1 Distribution rack (for routers)
-3 DCE/DTE cables
-5 AUI/RJ45 Ethernet transceivers (10BASE-T RJ-45)
-5 Ethernet cables
-5 Console cables
-Labels for routers

Preparations

1. Review student handout, Router Hardware Setup, prior to setting up routers.
2. Set up 5 PC workstations.
3. Make sure PCs have Hyperterminal and a router simulator installed.
4. Set up router distribution rack with routers and switch.
5. Label computers A through E.
6. Connect computers to routers.
7. Connect routers to switch.
8. Print handouts needed by students. (See Associated File)

Procedures

This lesson is the third in a mini-unit. Students should have some prior knowledge of networks and routers before attempting this lesson.

Note: I usually have 5 students using the routers at one time while the rest of the class is working with the router simulator program to perform the router configuration setup part of this lesson. Students then rotate taking turns on the real routers for the troubleshooting part of this lesson.

1. Set up the routers/switch in the distribution rack. Use the Router Hardware Setup handout. (See Associated File)

2. Label routers A through E.

3. Assign five students to routers A, B, C, D, and E (one to a router).

4. Review rubric handout for assessment of students. The rubric addresses procedures, analysis, error analysis, summary and data. (See Associated File)

5. Pass out the following handouts to students: Student Instructions, Student Activity Sheet, rubric, Router Configuration Setup, Troubleshooting Techniques, and Telnet Procedure. (See Associated File)

6. Explain Student Activity Sheet, Router Configuration Setup, Troubleshooting Techniques, and Telnet Procedure (previous lessons). (See Associated File)

7. Review Student Instructions for assignment with students. (See Associated File)

8. Observe students throughout the entire assignment and check for clarification from students regarding assignment.

9. Instruct students to configure routers using the Router Configuration Setup handout. (See Associated File)

10. Using the Telnet Procedure handout, instruct students to Telnet to the other four routers to make sure the routers are set up correctly and can communicate.

11. Instruct students to troubleshoot errors with router communication due to router configuration errors. Use the Troubleshooting Techniques handout. (See Associated File)

12. This step is to be done without student knowledge. When students are finished troubleshooting, switch the DCE/DTE cable around on router A so that the DTE side is connected to S0 on router A and the DCE side is connected to S1 on router B. (Note: If student is working on router B, you would switch the DCE/DTE cable around on router B so that DTE side is connected to S0 on router B and the DCE side is connected to S1 on router C, and so on.)

13. This step is to be done without student knowledge. Delete one of the directly connected Network IP addresses for the router the student is working on. (Make sure you write down the IP address that you deleted for each student.)

14. Instruct students to communicate with the other four attached routers using Telnet again. (They should experience errors in communication this time.)

15. Instruct students to troubleshoot communication problems until resolved. (If they follow the common Troubleshooting Techniques handout, they should check cables first and discover the DCE/DTE cable switch fairly quickly. They will discover the deleted directly connected network by examining the configuration file on the router.) Resolution to problem is to switch the DCE/DTE cable back to the correct serial ports and to add back to the configuration file the deleted directly connected network IP address.

16. Instruct students to write a detailed documentation in their Engineering Journals of their lab: problem scenario, step-by-step analysis of situation and procedures used, troubleshooting techniques used, solutions, and what was learned.

17. Lead students in an engaged class group discussion of lab.

Assessments

Formative: Students are observed throughout the entire activity and assessed for gaps in knowledge. Instructor provides instant feedback for students. Students write step-by-step detailed summaries of the completed lab in their journals, including any problems encountered, solutions implemented, and knowledge learned. Students participate in a classroom discussion about the lab. Instructor uses a rubric for assessing student performance. (See Associated File)

Extensions

The lesson can be modified to accommodate a number of students. Students can work in groups of 2 or 3, or more routers can be set up to accomodate more students. The ideal situation is to allow each student to have their own router connected to their PC. Most networking courses are small, 10 to 15 students. I usually have 5 students using the routers at one time while the rest of the class is working with the router simulator program to perform the router configuration setup part of this lesson. Students then rotate taking turns on the real routers for the troubleshooting part of this lesson.

Modifications: Student can be given more individual attention from instructor. Students can work with peers to help facilitate learning.

Web Links

This link provides information on obtaining routers and hardware. You can also get information about your school becoming a Cisco Academy.
Cisco

(This is my classroom link. You can find other links here that will also give you router and hardware information. The simulator that's located on this site is Cisco Proprietary and you must have a password to use it. You can find lots of good router simulator programs on the web by performing a search. Just type “router simulator” in the search box and press the enter key.
Robert Hungerford Preparatory High School

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