The last couple days here at work, I have been using a LessonBoard Pro. This is one of our newest products. The keys are all colored by which digit one should be using to press them. I’ll admit, although I type reasonably quickly, I do not type well. And there is a difference. When I type, I use my ring fingers almost not at all. And my pinkies, I use only for the “stretch” keys, if you will. So with my thumbs, index, and middle fingers, I type at a moderate pace – about 70 words per minute. I know that sounds pretty fast. But sitting here at my desk for the last few days, I have been trying to type more correctly. While the adjustments I am making (paired with the lack of labels) is slowing me down a bit, I can feel how much smoother the typing goes.
This is going to be a learning process. I only wish I had learned things right in school. We had typing class, of course, but the software has no idea which fingers you use where. Since I didn’t particularly care either, at that time being a rather average typist for a third grader, I learned some bad habits that I bump up against a million times a day. They tangle me up, slow me down, and get my letters switched around – ask anyone I email on a regular basis.
So now, I am relearning to type. And its not as hard as one might think. But I am so glad I’m not using those typing diagrams from elementary school this time around. I can actually see where I’m going. It’s sort of like turning the lights on. And that said, the lack of labels isn’t really so bad for me. But then, I’ve been using a keyboard hours a day for the last decade. Pausing to look for the letters is probably responsible for a food third of my normal typos. Once I get my fingers going the right places, I’ll be flying.
Typing was once a specialized skill reserved for the business, secretarial, and writing communities. These jobs were high paying and considered high skill. With the advent of the internet and the propagation of computers into every facet of life, this is no longer an optional ability. Employers are demanding this skill, even for low-wage, entry-level work.
Learning to type does not have to be difficult.
Finger position and muscle memory are at the core of typing. Traditionally, a student must first memorize all of the keys on a keyboard and how they are arranged. Remembering exactly which fingers go on which keys is the next important piece of memorization. In many classrooms, papers are handed out that diagram proper placement. This leaves students repeatedly checking screen, keyboard, and chart, losing momentum, and constantly making mistakes. The color-coded keyboards of Chester Creek present the perfect solution. Start your children out with a colorful FunKeyBoard or LearningBoard to help them learn key locations. For even younger kids, we offer the large-key kids’ KinderBoard. For the budding touch-typist in your life, we offer the LessonBoard. This keyboard naturally guides learners into correct typing habits by simple color-coding. We have also just added the LessonBoard Pro to our lineup. Color-coded, but lacking labels, the Pro forces students to memorize location of individual keys, but continues to encourage correct finger placement, reducing the urge to “peek” later in life. The Pro is actually my personal favorite of all of our keyboards, because it is such an interesting but obvious way to encourage kids and adults to learn more quickly and learn “better.”
Children, in some cases even toddlers, are now using computers at home and in school. However, learning the keys can be very frustrating for a child. All the keys look the same, the typeface is small, and the keys are often hard to reach. Children become discouraged and confused trying to remember the location of specific letters. Chester Creek’s keyboards for kids are great tools. Specially designed, with bold color-coding for vowels, consonants, numbers, and function keys, our children’s keyboards eliminate frustration and stress, providing a valuable, fun, and successful learning experience.
Teaching a child to use a computer at an early age can give them a head-start advantage. Knowledge of computer use and navigation can help stream line the process of creating projects and doing research for school. Later in life, good typing skills can cut work time in half for essays and papers, and in the work environment computer skills are a must.
An investment in your child’s computer skills is an investment in their future. One of the best values on the market today is a keyboard from Chester Creek. Chester Creek produces keyboards that are safe, sturdy, and practical. With boards in both standard and large-key layout, color-coded by character-set or finger placement, CCT has everything your child will need to learn to type quickly and correctly. Additionally, Chester Creek mice are designed specifically with a child’s hands in mind. Smaller and easier to grip and use, a CCT child’s computer mouse is also long-lasting, well-constructed, and color-coded. Our mice come with one or two buttons and with or without a scroll wheel, depending on what you, the consumer, need.
Check out this blog by journalist and freelance writer Cindy Downes!
She’s taking a look at one of my very favorite CCT products, the LessonBoard Our LessonBoard is coded by finger to help kids and adult alike learn to type in a quick and easy way. I just wish we had had something like this in my typing class. We also offer this sweet product as part of a really great classroom bundle, with TinyMouse, Headphones, and keyboard seal.
Buying as a bundle saves you more than $40!
While Cindy mentions covering the keys at a later date with tape, which can be sticky and inconvenient, CCT does also offer the SpeedSkin
learning aid, which fit snuggly over the keys and is easily removeable, and will soon be offering keyboard, color coded like the LessonBoard for hand placement, which does not have letter labels at all. You can expect to see this on the website soon.