A Fun Alternate Way to Teach Children Keyboarding1

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Grade Level
Elementary School
Subject
Computer
Length of Time
1 hour
Description

This lesson plan floor game teaches young children the keyboard using mnemonics, rather than mindless repetition, to help them remember key locations

Goals

In this lesson, students learn the LEFT side HOME row, Backspace key and Space Bar

Materials Needed

2 plain shower curtains, clear sheet protectors (32), electrical tape, white and colored paper (2 red, 2 green, 2 blue, 3 orange), black marker pen, blackboard or whiteboard

Procedure

Preparation:

On one shower curtain, tape 15 clear sheet protectors (leave top free to create a pocket) in 3 rows of 5. On the white paper, write the LEFT side top row letters (QWERT), bottom row letters (ZXCVB) and G. On the colored paper, write A and Animals (red), S and Snow (green), D and Dig (blue), and F, Food and Grass (orange). Insert the letter keys into their correct pockets and keep the word keys handy. Create a Backspace key and Space Bar and tape to keyboard Seat the students in a semi-circle around the keyboard on the floor

Have a short discussion about the four colored Home keys and, then, tell the class you have four fingers on your LEFT hand and there are four LEFT side Home keys, so it should be easy to work out what finger hits ASDF

Replace ASDF on the keyboard with Animals, Snow, Dig and Food and say, to help us remember ASDF, we are going to say aloud "Animals in the Snow Dig for Food". You could say here that many animals eat grass and, in the snow, they would have to dig for food

Choose four students to be the first four "fingers" and have them stand on the home keys. Choose two more students to be the Backspace key and Space Bar to be called upon, when needed

Have the class say aloud "Animals in the Snow Dig for Food" again and, this time, have each of the four "fingers" jump when they say their association word. Do this 10 times. You will be amazed at how quickly they remember

Now, the students start typing. The first word is "dad". When you call out D, the D finger jumps and you write D on the blackboard. Then, call out A and D

If a "finger" makes a mistake, call on the Backspace finger to jump on the Backspace key and, then, sit down. At the end of each word, have the Space Bar finger jump on the Space Bar and, then, sit down

In turn, choose more sets of four fingers to type the words: add as fad sad

But, wait, there's another letter in the middle row and you don't have any more fingers on your left hand. So, how do you type G? The Food finger does double the work (groan) and moves over to G. Have the class say aloud "Animals in the Snow Dig for Food like Grass" and, then, replace G with Grass. Have the Food finger move over to the Grass key and, then, back to the Food key. Give the Food finger a reward because he/she is doing double the work

In turn, choose more sets of four fingers to type the words: gag gas sag

Feedback would be very much appreciated. In Lesson Plan 2, students learn the LEFT side TOP and BOTTOM rows

Grading

You can grade the students on their ability to remember which finger hits which key

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