You will often be questioned by parents, students, administrators and colleagues on why it is necessary to spend time on keyboarding instruction.
You will hear that it is a basic skill that doesn’t require time and effort on the teachers’ part.
Kids are on computers all the time and they have picked up how to type. They may even have speeds in the 20-40 wpm range. Forcing them to use proper technique will slow them down initially.
People will question the reasoning behind this.
What is your response?
What result would this student’s position and posture have on her physical health?
She would likely suffer from repetitive stress injuries in her hands, arms, neck, shoulders and back if she maintained this position on a regular basis; not to mention the frustration she would experience because of her inability to improve her keying speed and accuracy.
Once a child develops habits and techniques that are harmful and frustrating, it is very difficult to eliminate them.
In every class there are considerable variations in the sizes of students.
In keyboarding classes, it is especially important to accommodate the physical size of each student to ensure that proper keyboarding technique can be learned.
Adjustable tables and/or chairs provide a common way to accomplish this.
If adjustable tables and chairs are not available, alternatives can be employed to accommodate each student.
Desks and Chairs Consider using books to raise students to the proper level for keying and foot blocks for correct foot placement. With simple accommodations, this 6-year old is able to use furniture designed for an older student without compromising her technique.
Wrist supports have become popular recently, but may not be the best idea in most cases since they can inhibit circulation and tend to reinforce the habit of resting the wrists rather than holding them in place with straight hands
Touch Keyboarding is the method of keying using the sense of TOUCH rather than the sense of SIGHT.
Visual memory is stronger than muscle memory—sight is stronger than touch. If you look, your brain will remember what it LOOKS like to press a certain key rather than what it FEELS like. You want to make your brain remember what it feels like so it becomes more automatic.
The goal is for the keyboardist to no longer think “I must press my fourth finger on my left hand without moving up or down” but thinks “s” and the finger responds automatically.
Right thumb rests lightly on or close to the space bar
Thumb is curved toward the palm of the right hand
Strike space bar with a quick, down-and-in motion of the thumb toward the palm
There should be no pause before or after the spacing stroke
In all probability, more waste motions are made in operating the space bar than in operating other parts of the keyboard. Poor spacebar control reduces keyboarding speed. Give daily emphasis to the proper use of the space bar.
The right little finger is extended to the enter key to make the forced return to the new line.
The other fingers are kept in home position
The extended finger is returned to home row quickly
Students with small hands may need to lift the middle or ring finger off its home key position as the littler finger is extended to make the return.
Students should be made aware that the enter/return key is only for forcing a line break at the end of a paragraph or list, and that word processing features automatically adjust the line endings within paragraphs.
The little finger reaches to the appropriate shift key, holding it down while the opposite hand keys the capital letter
Strive to keep other fingers in home position
The right shift key is used for making the capital of any letter key controlled by the fingers of the left hand. The left shift key is used for making the capital of any letter key controlled by the fingers of the right hand.
Shift key is released and little finger returned to home position immediately after the key is struck.
Students with small hands may need to lift the middle or ring finger off its home key position as the littler finger is extended to make the shift.