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Can you spare 15 minutes?

A recent survey of Keyboard Classroom users
showed a certain percentage of students practicing just five minutes a day.
 Like anything else, just a little more time would make a world of
difference.  Our studies show that fifteen minutes a day is the optimal
practice time.  A few minutes in the morning and then an equal amount of
time at night begins to create the muscle memory necessary to show marked
improvement.  Fifteen minutes a day for six months can result in typing
proficiency of 35 words per minute.   Encourage your child to work just a
little longer and they’ll take pride in their results.

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A recent survey of Keyboard Classroom users showed a certain percentage of students practicing just five minutes a day.  Like anything else, just a little more time would make a world of difference.  Our studies show that fifteen minutes a day is the optimal practice time.  A few minutes in the morning and then an equal amount of time at night begins to create the muscle memory necessary to show marked improvement.  Fifteen minutes a day for six months can result in typing proficiency of 35 words per minute.   Encourage your child to work just a little longer and they’ll take pride in their results.

What are Finger Guides, you ask?

Sometimes the best inventions are the most simple and straightforward.  Teaching a student how to type, teaching anyone how to type, can be only as effective as their motivation!

Keyboard Classroom has developed a unique product called Finger Guides. These Guides attach to a standard computer keyboard with velcro pads and guide a student’s fingers to the correct keys, allowing them to learn touch-typing without incorrect, error-prone moves. Learners want to look at their fingers.  It’s only natural and in our case, it’s OK at first.  But we wanted a way to insure that they would also use the proper finger placement and not resort to hunting and pecking with their index fingers.

So we invented these simple plastic Finger Guides.  You attach them to a typical keyboard, placing them diagonally between the “W” and the “E” on the left side, and the “I” and the “O” on the right.  By placing the middle and ring fingers on either side of each guide, hands are guaranteed to stay in the correct position.

We’ll ship you a free set of Finger Guides with every purchase of Keyboard Classroom.

It’s just that simple.

For more information on our typing program Keyboard Classroom and a picture of our exclusive Finger Guides, go to www.KeyboardClassroom.com

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Sometimes the best inventions are the most simple and straightforward.  Teaching a student how to type, teaching anyone how to type, can be only as effective as their motivation! Keyboard Classroom has developed a unique product called Finger Guides. These Guides attach to a standard computer keyboard with velcro pads and guide a student’s fingers to the correct keys, allowing them to learn touch-typing without incorrect, error-prone moves. Learners want to look at their fingers.  It’s only natural and in our case, it’s OK at first.  But we wanted a way to insure that they would also use the proper finger placement and not resort to hunting and pecking with their index fingers. So we invented these simple plastic Finger Guides.  You attach them to a typical keyboard, placing them diagonally between the “W” and the “E” on the left … Read More

Why Johnny Can’t Type?

WHY JOHNNY CAN’T TYPE…

“Johnny” from Massachusetts was your typical homeschooled 10 year old.  The oldest of four, his mother “Susan” had carefully constructed his program of study from the time he was just a toddler. She attended conventions throughout the northeast, and spent a small fortune on curriculum, books, and games, that would give Johnny the skills he would need to lead a successful life as he got older.

Early on, Susan recognized the importance of the computer to her son’s education and development and tried to incorporate the latest electronic software into his homeschool day. There was only one problem. Johnny didn’t know how to type. So, Susan went out and bought a popular learn-to-type software program. It was filled with fun exercises, flashing lights, sound effects, and typing games, and Johnny was able to advance at his own pace, “completing” the course in less than a week. He still didn’t know how to type.

Think of an athlete. Hitting a baseball, throwing a football, or kicking a soccer ball is effortless… a result of repeated practice. They perform basic skills naturally, without thinking. Willie Mays didn’t become the “Say Hey” kid in a week. “Air Jordan” wasn’t an overnight phenomenon. It’s the same with any skill, even typing.

Along with educators at the renowned Ben Bronz Academy in West Hartford, Connecticut, we’ve studied children in various learning environments for over two decades, watching and developing methods to improve the learning process. We’ve paid specific attention to children with attention problems, special education needs, and learning disabilities and concluded that young people with and without these learning issues, can succeed more effectively through the use of computers for drill and practice. And when they learn to touch type, they are able to channel their focus on what they’re learning. Their fingers actually become an unwitting extension of their brains!

It’s all about muscle memory. Great typists, like great athletes, need to learn the fundamentals by practicing them day after day, building new skills only after they master something less difficult. An effective keyboarding program should be systematically designed so a child must truly master a skill, before advancing to a more challenging one.

To teach children to type, we developed a program that incorporates the following elements.

  • Lessons are broken down into one minute fluency exercises to build muscle memory and cater to students with limited attention spans.
  • We work at a systematic pace. Students cannot go to the next level of difficulty without mastering an easier level.
  • The program stresses returning fingers to the “home position,” the key to touch typing proficiency.

· Everyone likes to have fun but games sometimes get in the way of good learning. We use games as incentives (not a teaching method) and as a reward for a job well done.

In a lot of ways, we’ve just gone back to basics, creating a structured but simple way for children to learn how to type… a skill they’ll use nearly every day for the rest of their lives.

By the way, Johnny has been using his new typing program for six months, practicing his keyboarding skills for just 15 minutes every day. Susan wrote us a note last week telling us he’s now fluent at 35 words per minute and she’s noticed a marked improvement in his other work as well. Now she says, “Johnny knows how to type.”

Carrie Shaw is an educator and the President of Keyboard Classroom, one of the fastest growing learn-to-type software programs in America. Her website is www.keyboardclassroom.com and she can be reached via email at carrie@keyboardclassroom.com.

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WHY JOHNNY CAN’T TYPE… “Johnny” from Massachusetts was your typical homeschooled 10 year old.  The oldest of four, his mother “Susan” had carefully constructed his program of study from the time he was just a toddler. She attended conventions throughout the northeast, and spent a small fortune on curriculum, books, and games, that would give Johnny the skills he would need to lead a successful life as he got older. Early on, Susan recognized the importance of the computer to her son’s education and development and tried to incorporate the latest electronic software into his homeschool day. There was only one problem. Johnny didn’t know how to type. So, Susan went out and bought a popular learn-to-type software program. It was filled with fun exercises, flashing lights, sound effects, and typing games, and Johnny was able to advance at his … Read More

Homeschool Reviews

http://chatterandclatter.blogspot.com/2011/07/review-keyboard-classroom.html

http://debrakb.blogspot.com/2011/08/review-keyboard-classroom.html

For more go to www.keyboardclassroom.com

Carrie

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I want to take the time to thank each and every homeschool mom who wrote a review for Keyboard Classroom this summer!  I know you are all extremely busy and I appreciate the time you put into understanding the uniqueness of Keyboard Classroom! Developer Dr. Ian Spence was the Headmaster of a school for learning disabled students when he created Keyboard Classroom.  He understood that handwriting imposed significant cognitive load on many students with or without learning disabilities.  Handwriting for some was painfully produced and frequently illegible.  After using this newly developed typing curriculum the school found  that students who learned how to type were able to generate more written output, make more meaningful revisions in drafts and make fewer spelling errors. This allowed the students to be more creative in their written work. When marketing this product I became … Read More

Why Fluencies?

There have been a lot of articles written recently about the “Fluency” approach to teaching. Some criticize it, calling it robotic… that learning by rote or memorization isn’t really learning. We beg to differ.

You become fluent in something when you can do it almost subconsciously, that is, you don’t have to think about it. Educational experts have shown that when a student expends energy trying to decode words or sentences, he or she has difficulty with comprehension. Likewise, a child who cannot form or locate the letters on a keyboard will find composition almost impossible.

Typing skills are complex tasks but when broken down into sub-skills as we do with Keyboard Classroom, a learning disabled child can advance quickly. Once a sub-skill is mastered, the student moves up a level and is introduced to the next one, while practicing the one already mastered.

Practice should occur at least twice a day for just fifteen minutes each. Our studies have shown that this is sufficient to become a proficient typist in just 6 months. By that time, homework should become easier, note taking should become less of a chore (using a portable keyboard like an AlphaSmart), and above all, learning will become less of a chore.

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There have been a lot of articles written recently about the “Fluency” approach to teaching. Some criticize it, calling it robotic… that learning by rote or memorization isn’t really learning. We beg to differ. You become fluent in something when you can do it almost subconsciously, that is, you don’t have to think about it. Educational experts have shown that when a student expends energy trying to decode words or sentences, he or she has difficulty with comprehension. Likewise, a child who cannot form or locate the letters on a keyboard will find composition almost impossible. Typing skills are complex tasks but when broken down into sub-skills as we do with Keyboard Classroom, a learning disabled child can advance quickly. Once a sub-skill is mastered, the student moves up a level and is introduced to the next one, while practicing … Read More

Dyslexia and Keyboarding

Stefan is an incredible 12 year old who’s intellect far surpasses his age. He has dyslexia BUT when he learned to type at a computer keyboard using Keyboard Classroom, he found his learning disorder went away. He no longer mixed up his B’s and D’s and P’s and Q’s. The keyboard wouldn’t let him. His Mom says it has opened up a whole new world of opportunities and that once he receives an AlphaSmart for note taking in school, he’ll have no problems keeping up with his classmates.

Richard Wanderman is an adult with Dyslexia who has helped himself and others by using the computer instead of a pen or pencil. He tours the country explaining why it works. “Writing with pen and ink is like sculpting stone: mistakes are costly, and that knowledge feeds back into the composition process. Writing with a computer is like sculpting clay: mistakes are fixable at any time, and that knowledge feeds back into the composition process.”

I couldn’t say it any better. To learn more, visit his web site at http://www.ldresources.org/?p=172

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Stefan is an incredible 12 year old who’s intellect far surpasses his age. He has dyslexia BUT when he learned to type at a computer keyboard using Keyboard Classroom, he found his learning disorder went away. He no longer mixed up his B’s and D’s and P’s and Q’s. The keyboard wouldn’t let him. His Mom says it has opened up a whole new world of opportunities and that once he receives an AlphaSmart for note taking in school, he’ll have no problems keeping up with his classmates. Richard Wanderman is an adult with Dyslexia who has helped himself and others by using the computer instead of a pen or pencil. He tours the country explaining why it works. “Writing with pen and ink is like sculpting stone: mistakes are costly, and that knowledge feeds back into the composition process. … Read More

Keyboard Classroom is ready for you!

Keyboard Classroom teaches typing skills in fast in one-minute sprints, quickly
developing speed and accuracy. As I said in my previous post, when a child with
a learning disability like Attention Deficit Disorder or ADHD,
Dyslexia
, Asperger Syndrome or other forms of Autism, can
type fast without thinking about where their fingers are, they can concentrate
on the words they will use to express their thoughts. It’s a life-long learning
skill.

There are five fluencies in the Keyboard
Classroom
learning system. Each is designed for students to master certain
sub-skills before advancing to the next level of difficulty. As they advance,
they earn points, “redeemable” for playing a series of games built into the
program as incentives.

To guarantee success, parents act as
coaches, ensuring that children practice their fluencies every day, using our
patented finger guides to place their hands in proper keyboarding position.

With a dedicated commitment by the
student and parent/coach, our studies show the average student can become a
basic touch typist in just 6 months, practicing just 15 minutes a day! It
really works.

For the past 24 years we’ve been
watching kids use the original software developed at the Ben Bronz Academy  and it is amazing to see their progress. And
best of all, they love doing their fluencies. Passing levels of difficulty is
like a badge of honor, and they wear it proudly. I can’t wait for everyone to
see our product!

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Keyboard Classroom teaches typing skills in fast in one-minute sprints, quickly developing speed and accuracy. As I said in my previous post, when a child with a learning disability like Attention Deficit Disorder or ADHD, Dyslexia, Asperger Syndrome or other forms of Autism, can type fast without thinking about where their fingers are, they can concentrate on the words they will use to express their thoughts. It’s a life-long learning skill. There are five fluencies in the Keyboard Classroom learning system. Each is designed for students to master certain sub-skills before advancing to the next level of difficulty. As they advance, they earn points, “redeemable” for playing a series of games built into the program as incentives. To guarantee success, parents act as coaches, ensuring that children practice their fluencies every day, using our patented finger guides to place their … Read More

An Idea is Born!

More than fourteen years ago, I went to work for an incredibly talented educator by the name of Dr. Ian Spence at the Ben Bronz Academy in West Hartford, CT. Ben Bronz specializes in giving bright students with learning disabilities the study skills they need to succeed in the real world. Ian had found in several decades of research, that children with learning disabilities like ADD, ADHD, Asperger’s Syndrome, Dyslexia, even some forms of Autism, were not incapable of learning in a mainstream environment, they just needed to “learn how to learn.” Dr. Spence built the school around an approach to learning called fluencies. A fluency is basically a timed exercise, repeated over and over again until the skill becomes second nature. Think of an athlete. Hitting a baseball, throwing a football, or kicking a soccer ball is effortless… a … Read More