Does It Matter How You Type?
Hey everybody. It’s Mike Gecawich, Co-founder of Typing.com and Edutyping.com back with another exciting episode of #AskEdutyping, where we field questions from our user audience from all across America, including students as well as teachers and administrators who use our Typing.com and Edutyping.com products.
So this week I’m going to start with a really cool tip. That’s how we begin every show with a keyboarding tip of the week and this one is called ‘The Over club’. Basically what this means is your students try to achieve a higher number of words per minute, each week, each month and throughout the school year, so here’s how it works.
So start with posting something on your board that you’re going to begin in ‘Over Club’, based on the age group that you teach whether it’s elementary school or high school. After your students have completed the first few lessons in a new unit or at the start of the school year or new semester you can determine about where your students are as far as the average number words per week. What you do is, post different numerical intervals such as 30 or 40 words per minute and call it the over 30 club, the over 40 club etc. With younger students start with the over 10 club or the over 5 club and the number stands for words per minute.
One thing to recognize here though is that it’s a net words per minute not just the gross number of words per minute. So you have to factor in accuracy when you are promoting students to the next club and come up with different ways of rewarding students. You could give them a lollipop when they reach the over X club whatever that number may be or you could provide them with some type of a sticker or maybe even a certificate that you create using Microsoft Word or Microsoft Publisher.
So again that is called ‘The Over Clubs’. Great way to incentivize students to increase their words per minute and accuracy every week or however incrementally we want to promote them to the next club.
So I’m joined off camera by my colleague Renee Sullivan who is going to read our fresh question of the week for #AskEdutyping, Renee.
Mike, Rachel Bohanon asks, from Typing.Com, “Does it matter how you type? I type at fifty five words per minute and I don’t exactly type as the Web site says to type.”
Great question Rachel, this type of question from students and teachers all the time is that you know I’m pretty efficient not following the traditional methodology that we introduced in our software. According to you know the standards that we’ve set over time from statistics and data and having taught keyboarding for years keeping our hands anchored on the home row key is definitely a tried and true proven effect to increase your worst per minute.
But what I don’t know from your question is how is your accuracy so not knowing that I would say that try to stick to the traditional method but if you do kind of sway a little bit away from that and it’s working to you that’s OK. Everybody’s different. Eye hand coordination doesn’t always work the same, so by all means stick with what you’re doing but always measure whether or not you’re improving and really focus on if your accuracy is you know achieving somewhere around a 97 to 100 percent and then modify your techniques accordingly. But that’s a great question Rachel. Let’s take our second question, Renee.
Barbara Bout asks from Typing.Com, “Hi Mike, I’m just wondering if there are typing tests for the beginner lessons?”
OK Barbara good question. So Barbara asked are there typing tests to basically measure students words per minute and accuracy out of the gate in Typing.com. So the answer to that question is No. Again Typing.com is our free product so it’s not as robust as far as the features go and especially with the lessons our staff, our programmers and our content development team here basically focus on adding new lessons and features primarily inside of Edutyping which is considered our premium product inside of Edutyping if you’d like to try that out is a free trial, you will find that there are two curriculum’s one for EduTyping Jr, which is for K-5 age group and then grades 6-12 is the EduTyping Secondary Curriculum.
Both of those curriculum come with what we call a pre and a post test and the pretest basically will allow you to measure where your students are before they begin typing, so you can kind of customize the curriculum benchmarks such as words per minute and accuracy accordingly and then the post has to set up to find out how well students have progressed.
What I would recommend going back to typing.com and your original question is have students begin the first couple of lessons and just tell them that those are practice. You can then determine what the words per minute and accuracy averages so you can set benchmarks as well and then have them just redo those as graded assignments. So they would kind of take the first couple as practice tests and then you can move to reassign those same lessons again. So hope that makes sense to you Barbara thanks a lot. We have time for one more question this wee, Rennie.
Marta Lewis from Raleigh North Carolina, she asks, “Do you offer anything for only one student who attends a school that does not offer your program. For a parent such as myself I would like to buy something for a six month period or so.”
Marta, we are asked this all the time as well. We have a lot of home school parents who reach out to us and then also parents of children who attend schools that don’t have a keyboarding program. I definitely empathize and sympathize with you, being a parent myself that you know has had schools who have gone through programs that offered keyboarding and then a couple of my children have gone to schools where it wasn’t offered so there was kind of that same dilemma that I was faced with.
Unfortunately, inside of EduTyping we primarily focus on a school based solution. Currently we don’t offer a single parent or a single license for a student. What I would recommend is there’s a number of resources outside of a pay program that you can go to. Number one you can sign up for our free trial and you would become the teacher and your child would become the student that will give you access for 30 days although I don’t know if that’s really going to solve your problem.
The other recommendation is that I would take a look at Amazon and do a search on keyboarding textbooks. Those are very robust as far as the curriculum goes. They are sold for different age groups and your child can practice offline, it’s not a web based model. So the disadvantage there is it won’t have automatic grading in all of the games and the additional benefits that an online program like EduTyping would offer to you. So hope that helps Marta.
That’s all we have time for this week folks but remember to submit your questions if we don’t get them on the air we’ll definitely respond to you via e-mail and you can also submit questions by reaching us through our blog on Edutyping.com as well as #AskEdutyping via Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. I’ll see you next week with the next show of #AskEdutyping. Happy teaching everybody. Take care.