Did you learn to type in school? Did your school use typewriters or were you using computers? Ours was one of the last classes to use electric typewriters. I really like that clacking typewriter sound. I have fond memories of playing with an old (and very heavy) manual typewriter as a child. My sister and I would rattle those keys (and often get them stuck) trying to be as fast as people we saw on TV or in movies. It wasn’t until that high school typing class that I realized why the keyboard was laid out like it was. Now, I cannot imagine a different arrangement of letters on the keys. We learned accuracy over speed. One of my daughters has been learning by this same method, too, from The Typing Coach. We have been using The Typing Coach Online Typing Course.
My children have been using computers (and their keyboards) from an early age. I’ve tried to emphasize that proper hand placement will let them type more efficiently and comfortably, but they have fallen into bad habits. The Typing Coach came along at just the right time. Not only are they learning correct hand placement, but posture as well. They are learning accuracy over speed. What good is typing quickly if you have errors or spend so much time backspacing and retyping?
Our main computer is not set up for good posture and is not easy to modify, so they are using my laptop at the dining room table. We are better able to set up the copy (utilizing a clipboard) and cover the screen (pillowcase for the win). This works well to maintain good posture. One daughter (7th grader) has been the main user during our review period. She does not like being told “her way” is wrong, but she has come around. We are not finished with the course, but she has already shown improvement. Not only is her speed increasing, but she is getting better at her accuracy the first time through.
For each lesson, there is an audio and supporting videos. Especially when learning posture and hand placement, the videos are very helpful. A blank page is opened in the word processing program (Pages on our Macs), the audio is started, from the same device or a different one. We have been downloading the audio for each lesson so that the practice can be done offline. We then cover the screen and get typing. After practicing the new lesson and she feels confident, it is time to test. If you want to retest, you cannot turn around and do it right away. This is to allow the learner time to practice before re-testing. My perfectionist daughter did not like letting her poorer score sit there; she wanted to quickly redo and get a better score. The testing can even be done offline, though it is better to do this online. Not only for the scoring and grade keeping but because the further emphasis of accuracy over speed.
The Typing Coach Online Typing Course is a year-long subscription for one learner. The course could be completed in 10 weeks. At that time, the speed may not be high (10 wpm at minimum), but good habits will have been established and accuracy will be high. Over time, the speed will increase. For most applications, the accuracy of typing (proper typing, not “hunt and peck”) is the needed skill. My older two girls will begin devoting more time to this to finish, then I will begin with the youngers. My hope is that I can instill these good habits and practices in them now so that they do not have to unlearn as their older sisters have had to. Regardless of where they go in life, good typing skills are a necessity. And The Typing Coach Online Typing Course is an easy and effective means of acquiring the skill.