For those of you new to my blog…I am an artist, but I’m also passionate about kid’s education (I trained as an art-teacher) and my blog is about my artistic journey and also creativity in general. My granddaughters (10 & 8) visit weekly and we do art, baking, etc. I have started teaching the 1o year old Photoshop and she has taken to it like a duck to water. Then I thought that perhaps she could learn to touch type and I found a fabulous childs’ typing programme – more like a game really, with different levels, characters and accents.
It is free and here is the link: http://www.bbc.co.uk/guides/z3c6tfr In order to provide an incentive I primised that once she reached Level 6 (of 12 levels) we would go to a movie, and at level 12 there would be another treat.
I made a box out of two shoeboxed taped together, to cover the keyboard. She took the keyboard cover home and guess what? She could not stop playing this new ‘game’ and spent hours learning. In just two weeks she is already at Level 11.
Movies, ice cream and a sleepover on Thursday!
A bit about the game: To make this interesting there are cartoon animals – my favourite has to be Level two with the octopus with its typing tentacles. Her name is Cali-Marie and she speaks in an Italian accent, saying ‘Well done, my bambini’. If they hit the wrong key, the right key bounces and shrieks out ‘Me next’. Cali-Marie’s octopus boyfriend serenades her (to give the little typist time to rest her fingers) singing ‘I am He’ except it is the two new keys they learn in level two, so it is ‘I an’ E’ . There is an American flamingo somewhere along the line and a Yorskhire goat introduces you to ‘Feel the boomps’ on the J & F in level 1 for the home keys.
So all you parents and grandparents out there, you could have real little typists by the end of the summer. The game says for 7 and up, but at that age I think their hands are a bit small and they don’t quite have the dexterity that they’ll have later.
For level 12 she’ll probably get a craft outing and then to consolidate I’m going to give her a chart to colour in each time she has touch-typed for ten minutes for 26 days. For the final reward, we’ll visit the Puppet Barge in Richmond on Thames. This is lovely puppet theatre on an actual barge and this year it is Brer Rabbit. One of our favourites!