Do you remember learning how to type?
Was it on a computer keyboard or a typewriter?
I must have been in that transition period during the mid-1990s because I learned both in high school.
While I may be in denial about how much time has passed since then, there is no denying I have two sweet children who will need to learn to type much sooner than I did. Between homework and computer games, my kids are doing more and more that involves typing.
Train research, anyone?
Watching them do the one-finger keyboard peck is oh, so painful. For my 6-year-old it is often accompanied by the “how do you spell” question and then a painfully long pause while he hunts for the “L” key. Then the “A” key. Then the…you get my point.
For this generation, there is no way around living in an online world. Waiting to teach this skill until high school is too late.
That one-finger peck needs to be remedied before it becomes a really bad habit.
Do they even teach typing in school anymore? I don’t even know.
A friend let me know about a free website called typing.com.
All you have to do is sign up for a free student account. By the way, typing.com doesn’t know me, I’m just sharing our experience thus far.
The site starts out teaching the very basics. The first lesson shows you where to put your index fingers, then you practice typing Js and Fs. Over and over. The lessons proceed from there by adding keys and increasing the difficulty.
The program records your accuracy, your speed and identifies where you need to improve. My kids are spending about 15 minutes on each lesson and seem to enjoy it. I mean, it’s not Minecraft, but it is extra computer time. So in their world, SCORE!
My plan is to have them spend some time each week building their typing skills. Every little bit helps. Oh, and this website isn’t just for kids. Adults can test and build their typing skills too!
I know it’s not as satisfying as hearing that happy little ding from an old-fashioned typewriter, but you’ve got to take what you can get!