These came directly from the classroom. I tested them on 400 students for a year.
Hands down, these are the most common mistakes students make that prevent them from excelling at keyboarding. Besides good tips, you might find this a different ways of saying things, for those multi-disciplinary students:
- Tuck your elbows against the sides of your body. This keeps your hands in the right spot—home row
- Use your thumb for the space bar. That leaves your hands on home row
- Curl fingers over home row—they’re cat paws, not dog paws
- Use inside fingers for inside keys, outside fingers for outside keys
- Use the finger closest to the key you need. Sounds simple, but this isn’t what usually happens with beginners.
- Keep your pointers anchored to f and j
- Play your keyboard like you do a piano (or violin, or guitar, or recorder). You’d never use your pointer for all keys
- Fingers move, not your hands. Hands stay anchored to the f and j keys
- Add a barrier between the sides of the keyboards. I fashioned one from cover stock. That’ll remind students to stay on the correct side of the keyboard
- Don’t use caps lock for capitals! Use shift.
–reprinted with permission Ask a Tech Teacher © 5-13-10