Monday, August 13, 2018

Typing

In a suddenly adult moment, I realized that my children were not going to be taught how to type by their schools.  I guess the schools can only focus on state testing? Expect students to use their texting thumbs forever? It was up to me to launch them into the world as typists.  I expect this skill to be useful for at least a few years until whatever new mind-blowing device appears that we can't even imagine yet. I decided it was worth it. 



I scrolled through a few free typing programs and settled on BBC's Dance Mat Typing.  This proved to be too silly for Genevieve, so I let her switch to this program, but the rest of us go around cooing "type on me" in a British accent.



I make Genevieve and Ben work on their typing every day as part of their chores.  They complain about it.  They don't see the need for this skill (please weigh in if you think this a useful skill anymore!). I was hoping they'd be great typists by summer's end, but they're both only about three-quarters of the way through memorizing the keys.  Oh well.  There's always next summer.

20 comments:

  1. I am so grateful I learned to type in high school. It served me well in college and recently, when I returned to seminary! I write a lot and knowing how to type makes it go much quicker!

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  2. Yes, typing is important! In fact, I was just thinking about this the other day, making a mental note to add it to the list of fall studies that they children will (probably) do.

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  3. Our local schools don't teach either cursive or typing. I've taken it on myself to teach the grands and great grands to do both. I still have my portable electric typewriter from when I went to high school in the late 50s and use it often.

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  4. Typing is soooo important!
    With the world not depending upon handwriting so much any longer, being able to type effectively and efficiently is extremely important, just as grammar is still needed.
    My girls learned typing in high school but it was called "Tech" and they learned how to use computer applications such as word processing and spreadsheet creation and presentation generation.

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  5. On our Home school transcripts for high school it was called keyboarding and was part of the computer science curriculum so they may have it taught in school that way. I took touch typing in high school on the old IBM selectric type writers and don't really remember a bit of it but there was a cute boy who sat behind me. That is what I do remember of that class. :) I can type fine on my keyboard and at least I don't do my two index fingers like my Dad.

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  6. It is absolutely a necessary skill for life! I learned in 9th grade and have always been grateful that I could type and could type quickly. It helped me get some jobs in my late teens I wouldn't have otherwise qualified for. Besides, they will need to type papers some day, if not for k-12, at least in college.

    I'm hoping our school will offer typing classes as it grows, since we are so low-tech both at school and at home. But I will file those programs away for future reference!

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  7. Absolutely necessary, whether it is called typing, keyboarding, etc... In high school, college, and the grown up world they will use this skill daily. I have friends who are lousy typists and watching them struggle with the keyboard is agony. Keep them at it!

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  8. It's so important! I learned in elementary school, but know many people my age who didn't and struggled later. Schools I have taught in often teach typing ("keyboarding") in junior high, but earlier would be so much more helpful! I have students who would be more successful if they had a better grasp on typing skills. Good for you for getting them going now!

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  9. Absolutely one of the best skills I learned in college. One summer while working at the library, I could either do data entry all summer long or be unemployed. By the end of the summer I had learned to type.

    The other skill I learned at that job was to use an adding machine by touch.
    SJ in Vancouver BC Canada

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  10. How do the schools expect the kids to use computers/keyboards? Typing is a must these days.

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  11. I just started my nine year old daughter with typing lessons - great to get your recommendations for programs! It’s an incredibly useful skill.

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  12. Yes...I started to realize this too. We have been doing the same thing with our kids chore list in the summer in the middle school years with varying degrees of dedication and success. Looks like you found some good options. Lynn used this one back when he taught keyboarding in the classroom-- www.typing.com

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  13. My girl had it as 'keyboarding' here in elementary school - 3rd grade maybe? I can't recall. It absolutely is an important skill.
    I remember fighting to be able to take typing in high school, as I thought it would come in handy, but back then, college bound girls didn't take typing, because only girls bound to be secretaries needed it. I'm ever so glad I pushed to take it - I'm still a super fast typist.

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  14. I've used typing.com with middle school students.

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  15. Laurie and Janelle, thanks for the recommendation. I don't now recall what guided my choices :/ but perhaps we'll switch to typing.com next summer!

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  16. It's an absolutely essential skill and our public schools don't teach it, either, which baffles me. Now more than ever, typing is so important.

    We use Typing.com, if you ever want to try something else!

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  17. Typing is very necessary, although, I knew a lot of "hunting and pecking" people in college and they seemed to do okay with their papers, but only because of the ease of corrections on a computer. I think it is good to start them young these days rather than in high school like we did back home. I am amazed at the differences among elementary schools from state to state, though. Our elementary school teaches typing since it is an essential skill for the state testing. I'm not sure which grade it starts in, though. It is taught during the computer lab time which the children attend every 3rd or 4th day. The children actually have to type timed essays for some portions of the standardized tests, so they must be able to type reasonably well. My son was out typing me (I was a secretary with excellent typing skills before becoming a mother) by 3rd grade, but not because of this typing class. He was able to type so well as a result of playing so many computer video games like Minecraft and interacting with other players on the "chat" that scrolled along with it.

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  18. I type at my job all the time. For those of us who took typing, our job is much easier. One of my co-workers who types with two fingers is always trying to get out of typing takes but it's pretty difficult to get thoughts gathered correctly without being able to type. Currently, it is an incredibly valuable skill. We all text, but at work we use keyboards.

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  19. It is a must. Speaking a a librarian, in general, and as the direct work supervisor of college-aged students. Good on you, Margo, for taking matters into your own hands here.

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  20. Hi! I think I'm the first daughter to comment on this (my mom sent me this).
    I'm nineteen now. When I was twelve, my mother made me and my two brothers (14 and 9 YO) do a typing course during summer. It had 27 lessons and it wasn't that attractive at all. At the beginning we were really competitive to see who could finish it first. I also wanted to do it because all my friends typed faster than I, and I thought mom was really cool when she typed when she worked (she's a translator). However, I couldn't get past lesson 7. My younger brother got to lesson twenty-something and my older brother completed it. I couldn't pass to lesson 8, no mater what I did. I was completely stuck. So I gave up. And the same happened the next summer.
    During the following years, I had to type a lot of school work, mainly projects and homework, so I started to type a lot. I already had the position of each finger memorized, even if I lacked fluency and made a lot of mistakes. But with that practice I got to type really fast.
    It is really important to use some program, or game, or some "formal" practice, but have them type relevant, meaningful things as much as they can. If they don't have the necessity of typing yet, they won't become great typist. This happens with everything: if you learnt French in school but thought it was useless, it is highly improbable that you are fluent in that language. But at least they will get familiar with the keyboard and that counts. Some very small thing we learn stick with us. It will take more than a summer, but they will thank you when they have to start writing papers, believe me.

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