Online Typing Tutors: Back to Basics with Typing Skills
PD Account Manager / PD Specialist
News on March 09 2020
Students can text, but can they type?
In today’s world of computers and technology — and with an increasing amount of coursework and assignments having to be presented in typed format — the need to equip students with strong typing skills is an often-overlooked but essential one. Whether it’s creating a Google Doc or Slide, coding, or even sending an email, students need to have basic touch typing skills in order to succeed. Most of them can text without looking at their phones, but often struggle with a keyboard. Here are some online typing tools that can help.
One of the most popular online typing tutorials is Typing.com. This website provides dozens of free, informative typing lessons from beginner through advanced levels. Students will have fun learning with interactive lessons that include games and videos – and even overall gamification. Students can pick an avatar, and as they progress the avatar for their chosen theme levels up. This creates a clear visual element to their achievements and progress. There are also badges for typing speed and accuracy, typing test speeds, games played, and more. Students can see their own statistics, which helps them track their progress. They can keep tabs on their problem keys. There is also a class scoreboard to compare progress with other students.
For the educator, there are comprehensive teacher tools that let them track students’ progress. Accounts for each student are created by the teacher in a localized classroom situation where only the students can have access. The free teacher portal enables them to supervise students in real time and even watch them as they type. In addition, it is a multilingual program with instructions and lessons available in Spanish or English. There is also a text-to-speech dictation feature which allows visually-impaired students to participate.
Another wonderful typing site for educators and students is Eduytpe. This is also a very comprehensive site with many options for students as well as teachers. It is a free site and integrates well with most student information systems. There are two levels of curriculum geared for lower and upper grades. In addition to all the data collecting tools, teachers can personalize lessons and even assign homework on the platform.
Typing skills for younger students
I believe that touch typing skills should be introduced at a very young level as children of all ages have access to technology now. For a fun and musical typing experience, students can go to Dance Mat Typing. While not as robust or feature-filled as the other sited mentioned here, Dance Mat Typing is engaging to younger students with bright colors and catchy songs along the way. It’s a good way to start the younger students off before moving on to some of the other available options.