Looking for an online keyboarding program that is fun and effective? A couple of years ago I shared the BBC Dance Mat Typing system. It is a unique animated program where the Brits take keyboarding novices through their paces while singing Rock and Roll!!!!
How can you lose? It has all of the necessary elements: Rock and Roll, well-designed lessons, and animated goats, chickens and frogs.
I like the overall program but I thought that the initial interface might be a bit confusing. SOOOO, I created my own wiki opening screen. It worked well and our 4th grade kids loved it. The funniest part was that after they spent half an hour listening to goats sing rock and roll with a cockney accent, they spent the rest of the day “talking funny.” =-)
Give it a try and tell us how your students (and you) liked it.
What would you say about learning the keys on the keyboard in an hour? The Almena Method claims that you can learn all of the key locations in an hour. It doesn’t claim that you will become an accomplished keyboarder in an hour, but they have a reference system for you to use to figure out which fingers you need to use for each of the letters.
The Almena Method is quite different from the standard style of mastering the homerow and then moving throughout the rest of the keyboard learning the keys. Almena King developed a series of mnemonic jingles to assist in remembering the key locations. Once you learn these
jingles, you can just recite them to yourself to remember where you’ll find the letters.
Notice the first jingle, Quiet Aunt Zelda, is for the three keys you hit with your left pinky. Want Something eXtra is for your left ring finger . . . and so on and so on and so on.
The Almena method is available as a server-loaded program that will run through your school’s network. It is also available through the Web so that the students can run it at school and at home.
Does it work? We used it with a class of 4th graders and had reasonable outcomes. Not all of the students used the jingles. When we interviewed the students, only about half of them said that they used the jingles to find the letters. I think that it had something to do with their learning styles.
The program is not limited to learning the jingles. The Almena Method also includes a number of lessons that the students use to practice keying the letters they have learned using the jingles. It includes assessment tests as well to gauge student progress.
Have you tried the Almena Method? How did it work? What did you find that made it useful?
Watch OUT!!!!! This will eat away ALL of your Time!!!
TypeRacer is a place where you can practice your typing by competing with other typists from all over the world.
You can practice by yourself, compete with friends or compete with perfect strangers. I couldn’t believe it but I saw some guy named Dave who was typing 150 wpm. THAT is amazing!!
It gets its name from the scenario that you are driving a race car and the faster you type, the faster your car will go.
I won the first few races that I typed. I was typing at about 44 wpm. It doesn’t let you make mistakes so if you mistype, you have to go back and retype it until it’s correct. The tricky thing is that I noticed as I got better, so did my opponents. They weren’t he same ones and it looked like they TypeRacer was mixing and matching to challenge me. Naturally, this kept me in “The Flow” (See Mihály Csíkszentmihályi ) and I lost complete track of time.
The only problem with this site is their choice of text to type. They have a totally innovative method for selecting text. They have you type quotes from movies. At the end of typing the quote, you can purchase the video if you wish. (ala Pandora.com) I say that this is a problem because some fo the text that I typed wasn’t appropriate for elementary school kids . . . but it’s good for you to practice.
Good luck and . . . .Happy Typing!!!!
Check this one out and see how fast you can go.
Looking for a fun mousing activity for your keyboarding learners?
Mouserobics is your answer!!!!
This simple but entertaining website hosted by the Central Kansas Library System is a winner. It takes the learner through 30 screens asking the learner to click on successive numbers along the way. These number appear in varying sizes and different screen locations to test the learner’s alertness and skill. As well as clicking on numbers, the learner is asked to use radio buttons, check boxes, drop down menus, and scroll bars.
This site is ready for kids from 5 through 105 years old. The accompanying text is written at about 5th grade, but that shouldn’t get in the way appealing to the younger crowd.
Games and Lessons for Keyboarding are the links that are featured at this website mastered by Kate Olson of the Longfellow Middle School in La Crosse, WI.
The coolest part of this list is that it is a list of sites that are not blocked by her school. Your network administrator may have other ideas about security and may have added some of these to the No-No list because of the “Threats to Security” that keyboarding programs can pose, ;-0 , but that is for you to find out.
Check this out: Mrs. Olson’s Keyboarding Links
I received a comment under one of the other posts where a reader who calls herself “Aunt Lee” noted that she has collected links to a number of on-line games. I tried these and many of them are pretty good. They have a variety of motivators. One of them involves a game where you keep a skateboarder on his board as long as you are keying accurately.
Check out Aunt Lee’s page at
Johnson, J., Roach, T., and Hames, R. (199) Online Journal of Distance Learning Administration, Volume II, Number I, Spring 1999 State University of West Georgia, Distance Education
Distance learning is an emerging model for the presentation and administration of educational content in schools across the country, at both secondary and post-secondary institutions. The forum used at the State University of West Georgia combines both distance learning and on-line Internet instruction. This study addresses the implementation of distance learning instruction in a selected business education graduate course in keyboarding methodology. Keyboarding experts across the country were identified to collaborate with the instructor and a class of graduate students at West Georgia. Distance learning technology was used to link the experts with the students as they discussed 86 issues in teaching keyboarding. Through the use of chat rooms, bulletin boards, e-mail, and telephone conversations, the group of experts and students discussed keyboarding methodologies pertinent to today’s keyboarding classrooms. The study demonstrated a successful and rewarding experience for both students and keyboarding experts.
As the title explains, Learn 2 Type for Kids, is the children’s version of their main site, Learn 2 Type. You can sign up for free and got through their typing tutor.
This can be a helpful resource for your kids who are learning to keyboard at school or for those who aren’t learning at school and want to learn to keyboard.
Learn 2 Type provides a free typing test and free typing tutor. You create an account and it will keep track of your progress as you learn to type. It even sends out reminders every once in a while if you haven’t revisited and practiced your keyboarding.
Also has lessons in Dvorak Keyboarding.