This post is brought to you by our sponsor KidzType.
Your keyboarding options just got more exciting!
With Kidztype, students choose various games and instructional tools to help them develop keyboarding skills with this innovative website.
Students interact with computers at earlier ages than ever before. According to research from Princeton University, children are exposed to computers as early as age 2. As students get older, the amount of time spent in front of a computer can be as much as five hours in a single day as a result of schoolwork, homework, and games.
Many elementary schools have computer labs. Laptops are being integrated into kindergarten classrooms. Consequently, keyboarding is no longer considered an optional life skill. Children need it to succeed in the classroom as well as within the workplace. “We believe that by teaching children how to use the keyboard at an early age, it can help them to succeed throughout life,” says the KidzType web developer.
KidzType was developed as a website to provide children with the chance to learn how to type correctly, by placing their fingers on the correct keys and increasing the speed in which they are able to type words. Many schools do not offer typing classes. However, most schools expect children to be able to type on a keyboard by the time they are finished with elementary school, according to some new studies.
Dance Mat Typing offers four levels and three stages at each of the four levels. There are animated characters that talk to children, so there is no need for them to be able to read what is on the screen. The focus of this aspect is to learn where fingers go on the keyboard, and a guide is provided along the way, ensuring kids do not struggle with the concept.
The QWERTY keyboard is used on desktop and laptop computers as well as on many mobile devices. This means that most kids are going to be exposed to the layout at an early age. By taking advantage of the Dance Mat typing activities, it is possible to teach kids how to type on it so they can be more functional on it as they get older.
Various typing games are also available, ranging from Car Rider to Vampire Hunter. There are easy, medium, and hard levels within the games and they are all animated with sound to ensure they are captivating to children of all ages. The word lists can also be found on the home, top, or bottom row, allowing an emphasis to be placed on where kids are struggling the most.
Typing Lessons found on the website take a more educational approach. These can be broken out over the course of several days or weeks. Each lesson takes place within the home, top, or bottom row or focuses on shift keys, number rows, or symbols. Approximately three keys are focused on within each lesson. Once a child has gained an understanding of one lesson, they can move on to another.
“I love using KidzType because the animation makes it exciting for my kid to want to learn how to type. They love their computer time because they see everything as a game instead of a lesson,” comments one enthusiastic mother. There are many high praises for the website because of what it is able to do. The moment children are exposed to a keyboard, they can begin using the website in order to learn valuable typing lessons.
Typing exercises are also promoted on the website. These are a review of what has already been taught. These use animation as well, though the focus is more of a review than tutorial.
During the exercise reviews, there is a timer. This helps to encourage kids to practice speed, which can be used to develop a WPM or word-per-minute count. This can be used as a goal to track progress. Accuracy is also identified as a percentage. Both of these statistics are commonly used for benchmarks to see how improvement is coming along. At the end of every exercise, children are positively reinforced with a digital trophy that shows their efforts.
Typing practice is yet another component of the website, where there is practice along the various rows, as well as typing sentences and paragraphs. This ensures that children are able to continue learning how to type, particularly as they progress into the higher level grades of elementary school where there is more of an emphasis on writing and English. There are still three levels: easy, medium, and hard. This ensures that children are able to start off slow and reach for the new levels as they improve their skills.
Perhaps best of all, the entire site is free. As long as there is an internet connection, children can use the dance mats and other lessons and exercises as often as they desire. It offers “education and entertainment,” as the site developer explains. “Keyboard Typing Games provide life skills, and most kids don’t even realize they are learning in the process.”
KidzType is a unique online keyboarding experience for children to learn how to type at an early age. The games, lessons, exercises, and practices are all animated with characters that children can relate to. As children improve, they can increase to a higher level. The games are free and new games are being added all the time.