Now that we have our office/homeschool room set up and the family computer is back online I decided it’s time to start teaching the girls to type. Since Lena learned that the Mars rover is controlled by coding here on Earth she’s wanted to do more with computers. The kids are pretty good with the mouse, but aren’t too familiar with the keyboard. They hunt and peck for every letter, and sometimes it takes them several minutes just to find the letter they need.
I decided to research some free online typing programs to see what I like in terms of lessons, reporting, accounts and navigation, and I gave the kids some experience with them too so they could decide which program they wanted to use. These are the programs I liked the best for homeschooling purposes. They aren’t games, but I figure we’ll find a few of those to let the girls practice too.
Free Typing Lessons Online
TypingClub was one of my top favorite typing lesson sites. You are able to create a homeschool teacher account with each of your students enrolled (free or paid) so you can keep tabs on their progress. There is an ability to turn statistics, typing speed notification, and other potentially useful or distracting program features on or off pending your students needs.
The lessons are easy to follow, give simple video instruction and easy to follow practice as students learn how to type. There are reminders to not look at the keyboard as well.
Typing.com is another great typing lesson site, but I wasn’t quite as excited for the lessons. There are other fun options for this site though. You can still create a homeschool teacher account with students so you can track progress. Students are also able to play typing games and select different skins for their lessons to appear as. The lessons were still simple, but not quite as streamlined as TypingClub.
Learn Typing has some great lessons, but younger kids won’t find as much enjoyment in it. There are no registrations or logins, so your progress won’t be saved on the site. You’ll need to remember where you were last so you can navigate to the right lesson from there. The videos aren’t as high of quality as Typing Club and have a slightly dated feel to them. Rather than moving you through the lessons page by page, you’ll need to scroll down the page to get to the next information or practice section. This definitely wasn’t my favorite site for typing education, however it may be right for your family, especially if you don’t care for keeping track of logins and passwords.
Peter’s Online Typing Course
Peter’s Online Typing Course has some interestingly placed, mostly pointless videos of music and animation, however the charm and simplicity of the site won me over. All of the lessons are detailed, but they are fully typed out, so it can get a bit tiresome to read through everything as you’re working to learn the keyboard. I’m a visual learner, so I may be a bit biased against the lesson format on this site. I did appreciate the detail, and while I wouldn’t suggest this site for a younger student, it may be a better site for students who prefer to read text as their educational source.
How To Type
How to Type is the most basic of all the free online lessons I found. There isn’t too much direction and it gives you several practice sections in specific categories, such as home row, top row. capitalization, etc. For me this site wasn’t so much a lesson site as it was a practice site, though they do have different sections for practice and lessons. Lessons consisted of typing practice specific to the categories listed above, while practice had you type over different quotes.
What resources are you using to teach your students to type? I’d love to hear of any additional sources you’ve had luck with. Please share in the comments below.