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Learning to Type

It has become more important than ever in today's increasingly digital world for children to learn how to type properly. Much of our communication is conducted electronically, and typing skills are invaluable in our day-to-day living, schooling, university and careers that all assume and require accurate and fast typing.

So what's the best and most effective way to teach kids these crucial skills? Children need proper, methodical instruction to learn how to touch-type. Allowing them to randomly strike the keyboard isn't productive and is actually likely to instill poor typing habits that might be difficult or impossible to break.

The best typing software for kids teaches children correct finger-to-key movement across the entire keyboard and includes a variety of material to keep them motivated while they learn.

At Stanley Bay School we encourage children to practice good keyboarding skills as soon as they can. This can be as simple as poising both hands over the keyboard, and using both hands to type. The thumb should be always used for the space bar.

Although learning to type is not part of the National Curriculum, we believe it is an important skill to master, and will encourage the learning of this skill for children while at Stanley Bay School. Sometimes teachers may ask children to do some of these exercises for homework.

Read more at Typing for Kids – top ten reviews 

Free Typing software and Games

Online:

For juniors with no experience:

Practice home keys:
http://www.learninggamesforkids.com/typing_factory/home-keys-typing-practice.html

Typing letters:
http://www.learninggamesforkids.com/keyboarding_games/keyboarding_games_cup_stacking.html

Typing numbers
http://www.learninggamesforkids.com/keyboarding_games/keyboarding_games_arachnid_falls.html

Instructional – learn touch typing

BBC website

Level 1


        Level 3 

Ratatype
Ratatype is an online typing tutor and a great website for people who want to type better. Start to learn, master your skills, challenge your friends or simply get a typing certificate. You can also do a speed test.
http://www.ratatype.com/


Keybr.com

Keybr.com is web–based software that runs directly in your browser. You can choose from three basic lessons that start with a certain number of keys on the keyboard, and then, as you progress through the lessons, more keys are introduced. The software keeps track of all your mistakes and your words–per–minute and even creates graphs of your day–by–day performance.
http://www.keybr.com 

Games:

(these are practice for good spellers, and those that have already done all tuition fingering.)

Practice for all keys:
http://www.learninggamesforkids.com/keyboarding_games/jumping.swf

Word Games
This offers a large collection of online word games and typing games.  Some of the games can be downloaded to your computer (see Typing Defense).
http://www.wordgames.com

Free school-wide tutor and tracker
http://www.typingweb.com/tutor/courses/ 

Spelling games to practice typing and spelling at the same time

Look, cover, write, check
This website will provide words with specific spelling patterns for you to practise, or you can write in your own.
http://www.ictgames.com/lcwc.html

Attack of the spellers
This is a bit clunky and old fashioned, but really useful for testing spelling words! You can create an ‘alien invasion’ out of any word list, or use the existing word lists, and the student must type to shoot down the aliens.  Of course they should be practicing correct fingering (or at least using two hands and the thumb for the spacebar).
http://mrnussbaum.com/spellerz-play

ESL Desk – wordspell
Another program that you can add your own words for practice in both spelling and typing.
http://www.esldesk.com/spelling/word 

Offline

Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing
This can be downloaded free to your computer and allows you to work through a program set up with your child’s preferences. Mavis Bacon provides not only lessons and drills, but also videos and text advice on proper typing posture. It also allows you to build custom lessons, play special typing games, and check the ergonomics at your desk.
http://download.cnet.com/Mavis-Beacon-Teaches-Typing-17-Deluxe/3000-2051_4-10441764.html