A girl named Lucy recently asked me how she could motivate her parents to learn how to touch type.
Since computers were much harder to come by when parents were in school, many haven’t learned proper typing habits.
Sure, pecking your way through an email will suffice for basic communication. But it’s never too late for adults to benefit from improving their typing skills.
And as a bonus, if parents take an interest in improving their typing skills, it can be a great opportunity for extending student learning at home.
For once, children can be the teacher as they monitor parents on proper form and finger placement as they get started.
If you think your students’ parents could benefit from or would be interested in improving their own touch typing skills, consider the following steps for setting up a family-friendly typing program.
One of the best aspects of Typing.com is that it is free and available to everyone!
As long as you have a computer and internet connection, you can access high-quality and engaging typing lessons and be on your way to proficient touch typing in no time.
For parents who are interested in improving their typing skills, send home a quick one-pager explaining how to set up a Typing.com account.
If there is a lot of interest amongst parents, you could even host a kickoff night in your classroom.
Invite parents in and help them set up their own accounts. From there, students can model how the lessons work and give pointers on what proper typing form looks like.
This is a great opportunity to build investment in typing skills for the whole family.
Make Progress Tracking Fun
Just because parents are older than their children doesn’t mean they can’t benefit from the same fun and motivational factors when it comes to improving their typing skills.
Once you have interested parents set up with Typing.com accounts, consider sending home some resources to keep them invested.
An easy option is to make a take-home version of the Fast Track Keyboarding Excitement poster.
Families can post this mini-race track on the refrigerator and each family member can track their WPM.
This is a fun way for parents and students to beat each other’s highest WPM and will encourage more practice at home.
Once students and parents have the basics down, typing can quickly become a fun family activity.
Parents can also create Nitro Type accounts and race with their kids and even other parents.
Send home instructions on how to create an account and set up a friends race.
You could even host a Nitro Type tournament once per quarter where students and parents face off against each other.
When it comes to computer skills, typing is just the beginning. I like to think of typing as a gateway skill that opens the door to becoming more tech literate.
Just like their with their students, mastering typing for parents is the first step to building their abilities in word processing, internet usage, and any number of other computer applications.
It’s never too late to learn something new!