Next up for the Schoolhouse Review Crew is Keyboarding for the Christian School, written by Leanne Beitel. Written to be used in both the classroom and at-home setting, this award-winning keyboarding curriculum comes in 2 editions — one for elementary students and the other for grades 6 and up. We received the large-font elementary edition ebook (as a PDF file) for review.
Keyboarding for the Christian School is a basic keyboarding program, teaching in a way similar to the way I learned to type in junior high school. It emphasizes appropriate technique, such as sit up straight, keep feet flat on the floor, hands on the home row, curved fingers, and eyes looking at the copy, placed on the right. It uses the QWERTY keyboard (I didn’t even know there was another keyboard!).
But there is one huge difference . . .
This keyboarding curriculum teaches your students how to compute by practicing with Scripture! In fact, even before they are to the point of typing actual words, every lesson begins with a verse from the Bible:
1 Corinthians 16:3, “Then, when I arrive, I will give letters of introduction to the men you approve and send them with your gift to Jeruselem.”
I love the gentle way the author sneaks in the idea of writing letters. For my 11-year-old boy, it’s wonderful for him to realize right away that the computer can be used for something other than gaming! She actually chose this verse because on these days, students are learning where all of the letters are on the keyboard. There are verses for when they are learning to type symbols and numbers as well. Once all of the letters, symbols, and numbers are mastered, instruction goes on the include passages of scripture for practice, mostly from Psalms. She uses the NIV translation.
Along with mastering the keyboard, this program also teaches centering, creating ennumerated lists, and timed writings.
Because this book came in PDF form, we had to make a choice for how to use it. Unlike most software-based keyboard programs, this one does not have the student looking at the computer screen to type. Our choices were to either print the book (or individual pages as we went along), or, to choose the more fun option and upload the file to our iPad. So, of course, we chose the more fun option! Ben simply placed the iPad on his desk to his right and got busy learning.
He has enjoyed using Keyboarding for the Christian School. It was the first time he had attempted to use something not software-based, so I wasn’t sure what he would think. I assume getting to use the iPad helped bring him around to the idea of using something not so flashy. I found it much more useful without the distractions of the characters, games, and noises that generally come along with other programs. And the best part has been seeing Ben’s improvement in hand placement and keyboard speed, even when he’s just playing a computer game.
Keyboarding for the Christian School is a great option for introducing basic keyboarding to your students. It can be purchased from the website for $12.95 in both regular and large-print editions. For your older students, or those already proficient in the basics of keyboarding, consider the original book for $15.95. You can purchase both for the discounted price of $22.
Leanne is offering a 20% discount for my readers through August 29, 2012. Use the code SUMMER2012!
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