Future job benefits from learning how to type

Future job benefits from learning how to type

Future job benefits from learning how to type

In the modern world, learning how to type is an important skill that can offer numerous benefits for your future career. Here are just a few of the ways that learning how to type can help you in your professional life:

 

Increased productivity: Typing is generally faster than writing by hand, which means that you can get more work done in less time. This can be especially valuable in fast-paced work environments where productivity is key.

 

Improved communication: Typing allows you to easily communicate with coworkers, clients, and customers through email and other digital channels. It also enables you to type out documents, reports, and other materials more quickly and accurately, which can improve the overall quality of your work.

 

Greater flexibility: Many jobs now require the ability to work remotely or to use computers and other digital tools. By learning how to type, you will be able to take on these types of roles more easily and effectively.

 

Enhanced job prospects: In today’s job market, the ability to type is often considered a basic skill. As a result, learning how to type can make you a more competitive job candidate and increase your chances of landing your dream job.

 

Better accuracy: Typing allows you to input information into a computer more accurately than writing by hand. This can be particularly useful when working with numbers or data, as it reduces the risk of errors that can occur when writing by hand.

Increased speed: As mentioned earlier, typing is generally faster than writing by hand. This can be especially useful when you need to complete tasks quickly or when you are working under tight deadlines.

Enhanced presentation skills: Typing allows you to easily create and edit documents, presentations, and other materials using software such as Microsoft Word or PowerPoint. This can help you create professional-looking documents and presentations, which can be beneficial in job interviews and other professional settings.

Greater accessibility: For individuals with disabilities that make writing by hand difficult, typing can provide a way to communicate and complete tasks more easily. Many assistive technologies, such as voice recognition software, are available to help individuals with disabilities type more effectively.

In summary, learning how to type can offer numerous benefits for your future career. It can help you increase your productivity, improve your communication skills, and open up new job opportunities. As technology continues to evolve, the ability to type will likely become even more important in the job market, making it a valuable skill to learn early on.

New Searsol touch typing centre starting in January 19th 2023 in Drogheda, Louth

Typing classes Drogheda, Louth
Speedskin covers to stop your child from looking down at the keyboard!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Searsol typing classes starting in Drogheda, Louth in January 2023!

 

Searsol is starting a new after-school touch-typing class at Drogheda Institute of Further Education in Drogheda Louth starting on Thursday the 19th of January 2023 at 4.15 or 5.15 pm.

 

Our new center will be starting on the 19th of January 2023 in Drogheda Institute of Further Education and will take place each Wednesday at 4:15 or 5:15 pm. Searsol is currently offering a free introductory first session trial at our new center. Our after-school typing classes are suitable for any child who is eight years old or older that may be interested in trying out our typing classes. More information about the new center is available on our website at https://searsol.com/location/drogheda-louth

Our typing classes are specifically designed to develop typing skills for children. Searsol has provided after-school typing courses for children since 2008. We have a high success rate of students that have successfully learned how to touch type. During the course, the student will learn how to touch type correctly assisted by a qualified tutor. We use our own specially designed typing software Typewiz.

This course is suitable for children who want to learn how to type correctly. We work with children with learning differences like Dyslexia or Dyspraxia or children with handwriting problems or who have gained an exemption to use a laptop for exams. To book your free trial place you can contact Searsol on 01-6303384 or book a free trial at our Drogheda centre by clicking here

New Searsol touch typing centre starting in November 8th 2022 in Whitehall, Dublin 9

Typing classes Whitehall, Dublin 9
Speedskin covers to stop your child from looking down at the keyboard!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Searsol typing classes starting in Whitehall, Dublin 9.

 

Searsol is starting a new after-school touch-typing class in St Aidan’s CBS  in Whitehall Dublin 9 starting on Tuesday the 8th of November 2022 at 4 or 5 pm.

 

Our new center will be starting on the 8th of November 2022 in St Aidan’s CBS and will take place each Tuesday at 4 or 5 pm. Searsol is currently offering a free introductory first session trial at our new center. Our after-school typing classes are suitable for any child who is eight years old or older that may be interested in trying out our typing classes. More information about the new center is available on our website at https://searsol.com/location/whitehall-dublin/

Our typing classes are specifically designed to develop typing skills for children. Searsol has provided after-school typing courses for children since 2008. We have a high success rate of students that have successfully learned how to touch type. During the course, the student will learn how to touch type correctly assisted by a qualified tutor. We use our own specially designed typing software Typewiz.

This course is suitable for children who want to learn how to type correctly. We work with children with learning differences like Dyslexia or Dyspraxia or children with handwriting problems or who have gained an exemption to use a laptop for exams. To book your free trial place you can contact Searsol on 01-6303384 or book a free trial at our Whitehall centre Dublin 9 by clicking here

Benefits of touch typing for a child with dyslexia

Benefits of touch typing for a child with dyslexia

Touch typing is a technique that creates a structure where you have to place different fingers on specific areas on your keyboard. You are using all your 10 fingers, and each one is in charge of a section or a column on the keyboard and it all starts with the home row.

Keyboard with speedskin covers

What is dyslexia?

Dyslexia is a common learning difficulty that mainly causes problems with reading, writing and spelling. It’s a specific learning difficulty, which means it causes problems with certain abilities used for learning, such as reading and writing and has nothing to do with intelligence. Dyslexia affects up to 10% of the population and may impact an individual’s ability to split words into their component sounds, or phonemes.

 

Significantly, individuals with dyslexia are perfectly capable of comprehending complicated ideas and should not be limited in their potential because of a misunderstanding of their abilities. Sometimes all a person needs is a little more time to process information, or a new approach to processing information, such as having to listen to an ebook rather than reading.

For many children and adults, developing good literacy skills involves overcoming the obstacles offered by specific learning impairments such as dyslexia. Dyslexia affects reading, writing, and spelling ability, but it can also lead to low self-esteem and a lack of confidence in the classroom.

 

Mnemonic devices help in the learning of challenging words’ spelling. Reading requires reduced cognitive work when high-frequency language is memorised. 

 

Also, dyslexics who have received touch typing education can reinforce phonics knowledge, employ muscle memory to remember word spellings, and facilitate the translation of concepts into written language.

This makes the process of writing less difficult and makes writing more seamless and effective.

-Typing vs writing contrast, MRI images Higashiyama et al, 2015, Japan, Cognitive NeuroScience PLOS

 

Why learning how to touch type is suitable for a child with dyslexia:

 

Ideas flow smoothly from the fingertips and onto the screen while touch typing. There isn’t any distraction generated by letter formation. Spelling errors may be easily made and corrected without the discomfort of erasure marks or hasty crossing out. Many children who have severe learning disabilities struggle with English spelling at first because of its extremely irregular nature and the number of sound mappings that may be applied to the same letter and letter combinations. 

 

Typing classes also expose students to numerous samples of written language, allowing them to become more comfortable with these words. It becomes simpler to spell and sight-read words after repeated exposure.

 

Children who learn to touch type via the type wiz programme have their phonics skills enhanced while simultaneously learning how to navigate a keyboard. This is due to the fact that letters and words are read aloud, presented on the screen, and typed by the pupil.

 

Producing work on a computer also frees the writer from attempting to process thoughts in a linear fashion. Dyslexic individuals in particular benefit from being able to capture thoughts and then structure them later on. It can even improve physical dexterity and actually help to handwrite.

 

    

 

Benefits of touch typing for someone who is dyslexic

  • Touch typing provides phonics training helpful to dyslexic children

Typing assists dyslexic children in breaking down words into smaller sounds. This can be really beneficial for reading and spelling. Touch typing allows a dyslexic child to develop sound-letter correlation. This teaches a child which letters create which sounds. Touch typing also eliminates the child’s need to make letters. This allows a child to concentrate more effectively on the sounds and the characters that correspond to them.

 

  • Improved productivity

Concentration improves and output increases. They will be able to ‘write’ faster, sometimes up to five times their normal writing speed. This will save them time and make learning so much easier and enjoyable

 

  • Less stressful in exams

It means that in class or in exams, children with dyslexia can get their thoughts down on paper more easily because they don’t have to worry about how to form a word on paper. They don’t have to hold a pen in the right way to make a mark and they don’t have to make the letters and words look neat or spaced out.

  • Touch typing employs multi-sensory learning and develops muscle memory.

Touch typing is multi-sensory as it links sight and hearing to touch. The tactile element of pressing the keys helps with remembering the sounds that make up tricky words. Touch typing also develops muscle memory which is very useful when learning letter patterns and spelling.

 

  • Typing at the speed of thought

Touch typing helps a child to think freely and type at the speed of thought as here is no distraction in having to look down at the keyboard to hunt and peck for the correct key. Making familiar patterns with the fingers starts to become automatic so that they begin to spell sight words and common words just by remembering the movement of their fingers on the keyboard.

  • Messy handwriting will be eliminated

Using a computer, individuals with dyslexia can type freely, without worrying about messy handwriting or errors. If they have learnt to touch-type properly, they will be typing accurately, barely having to hit the backspace key to correct their work. Another huge bonus, is when they are trying to stay focused on their thoughts.

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  • Increased confidence

There are so many reasons why touch typing is the right choice for children with dyslexia. It helps them to transform their thoughts and ideas freely into words, giving them the confidence and ability to communicate effectively.

 

 

Why not get your child to try out our free trial assessment touch typing course where you’ll gain valuable insights into your child’s current typing accuracy and word per min speed. 

There is no obligation to continue on and you will receive a report which will outline what your child’s typing speed will be in their first six months of attending a Searsol typing centre.

Click here https://searsol.com/find-centers/?search

 

What makes a successful typist

Touch typing is a technique that creates a structure where you have to place different fingers on specific areas on your keyboard. You are using all your 10 fingers, and each one is in charge of a section or a column on the keyboard and it all starts with the home row.

Typing is something that is becoming more and more prominent nowadays and remains a foundational life skill so getting your child to learn this skill properly is extremely necessary and will be of benefit to them for the entirety of their life. It can not only help them with their school work but can also set them up with an advantage in later life when it comes to exploring job opportunities. Many jobs in the modern world of work now require quick typing skills, but with advances in technology that’s set to become even more important.

 

The things which make a successful typist are:

 

Repetition and routine, posture, home keys, covering keyboard with skin

 

The first key to learning to type is learning the correct hand position. Starting with your pinky on the A key, your left-hand fingers rest on the A, S, D, and F keys. The right-hand pinky goes on the; key, and fingers rest on the J, K, L, and; keys. These keys are the home row keys. Your thumbs should either be in the air or lightly touch the spacebar key. Once you have the hand positions down, you can practice touch typing – typing without looking at the keyboard. By doing so, your muscles will memorise the movements and even key patterns. 

 

For example, when you type frequently used combinations such as “the”, your motor system will pick up on this. With muscle memory, you can type at a much faster speed. In addition, when you type in looking at the screen, you are able to catch errors faster. This frees up cognitive attention and processing power for the content of the task, so writers can focus on the work they are producing vs. the mechanics of recording it in electronic format.

 

You probably know roughly where the keys are located on the keyboard, but the goal of improving your typing skills is to do it without looking at the keys. Set yourself up for success by putting your body in the proper position for comfort and avoiding injury.

 

 Follow these seven steps to improve your typing posture and positioning:

  1. Sit up straight in a chair with the keyboard or laptop at a comfortable height on the table or desk.
  2. Put your feet flat on the floor.
  3. Place the screen so it’s 15 to 25 inches from your eyes, and in a position where you are looking down slightly.
  4. Keep your elbows bent at a 90-degree angle and try to expose your shoulders, arms, wrists and elbows to as little strain as possible. You want to avoid developing any habits that would cause repetitive stress injury long-term.
  5. Place your left and right pointer fingers on the F and the J keys. Many keyboards have a little raised tab on those letters so you can orient your fingers without looking. Let the rest of your fingers on each hand fall on the remaining keys in the home row (D, S, and A for the left hand; K, L, and the “;” symbol for the right hand). Both thumbs rest on the space bar.
  6. With your fingers positioned on the home row, you’ll train your hands to reach all the other keys without having to look. This is called “touch typing.” Essentially, each finger is responsible for the keys just above and below the home row key it sits on. Try to imagine vertical dividers around each finger. The right pinky is responsible for the return, shift, and delete keys, and the left pinky is for the shift, caps lock, and tab keys. It may feel awkward at first since our pinky fingers aren’t always strong, but with practice, it will feel more natural.

 

It is recommended to use a cover to cover the keys to build up a repetitive routine and to boost your confidence when touch typing

Typing keyboard
How long does it take to learn how to touch type?

Key ingredients needed to be a successful touch typist – Motivation and concentration

 

People often quote Malcolm Gladwell’s ideas on how to make something a habit. In his book ‘Outliers’, he says “It takes 10,000 hours to master anything.” 10,000 hours translates into 416 days, or over a year of your life—if you practice 24 hours a day!

While that amount of time applied to typing practice might seem much too daunting, neuroscience research suggests that our brains don’t develop based on an inherent set of preprogrammed patterns. In other words, our brains are always ready for new skills. Practice leads to learning in the developing and the mature brain, and the resulting structural changes to the brain encode that learning. Once you learn the basics of finger placement and where they move on the keyboard, practicing with intention gives you lifetime mastery that will make every instance of typing easier.

 

The Typewiz bot helps your child to remain engaged by providing help and tips to learn how to touch type. Our bot analyses your child’s performance and encourages them to type better.

 

Typewiz offers a report showing how your child is progressing on the course. The report shows the following information:

  • Exercises Completed
  • Highest Score
  • 100% Scores
  • Excellent Scores
  • Average Accuracy
  • Coins Earned
  • Average WPM
  • Top WPM

Information can be shown weekly, last six months, last year, or all time. Our report has both accuracy and wpm graphs. So it can easily be viewed. Reports can be printed off. Course certificates are available to print as well. These reports often motivate children as they want to beat their wpm or exercises completed from the previous day.

 

Touch typing program – need to be fun and gamified like Typewiz!

Typewiz

It is vital when learning how to touch type it is an engaging and interactive experience. Typewiz allows children to earn an avatar as they complete each lesson in Typewiz. Thus motivating your child to learn how to touch type. Typewiz has fun and interactive typing games for your child to enjoy. Your child can compete with other children and see who is on top of the leaderboard. A virtual coin is used for each game. This is earned by your child’s performance on the Typewiz course which prompts them to achieve high scores or improve their wpm. Thus motivating them to complete exercises fast and accurately. These incentives stimulate children to complete more exercises and improve their wpm which improves their accuracy.

Why should you learn how to touch type?

Why should you learn how to touch type?

Touch typing is a technique that creates a structure where you have to place different fingers on specific areas on your keyboard. You are using all your 10 fingers, and each one is in charge of a section or a column on the keyboard and it all starts with the home row.

Touch typing
Touch typing

Typing is something that is becoming more and more prominent nowadays and remains a foundational life skill so getting your child to learn this skill is extremely necessary and will be of benefit to them for the entirety of their life. It can not only help them with their school work but can also set them up with an advantage in later life when it comes to exploring job opportunities. Many jobs in the modern world of work now require quick typing skills, but with advances in technology that’s set to become even more important.

 

Future job benefits from learning how to type

Being able to type quickly and precisely will give you a significant advantage when applying for jobs. Employers like to know that their employees can type properly because it will increase their productivity and enhance the accuracy of their work. 

 

Every day, a large percentage of us use a computer. It’s not just secretarial and administrative workers who need keyboarding skills in the workplace anymore. Typing is as fundamental to the majority of job seekers as the use of Word or being able to navigate the internet has become a necessity for education and work purposes. This is because mostly everyone sends emails, which would include artists, journalists, teachers, and sales representatives, or completes team projects. If the record-keeping and communication aspects of your job take you several hours, you may not be as competitive as the next candidate applying for the position.

 

With advances in technology, the rise of robotics, and an ever-changing job market, the ability to touch type is going to become even more important for future careers. Especially currently, given the prevalence of computers in the business world, a typing speed of 50 words per minute is often regarded as the basic minimum for employees to accomplish in order to be considered efficient.

Touch typing
Touch typing

 

Why is learning how to touch type beneficial for children?

 

Touch typing aids your child to type faster as well as accurately, without having to look at the keyboard every now and then. Touch typing becomes unconscious after a while, allowing your child to be more creative. Undoubtedly a  child can learn faster than an adult. As a result, the earlier they learn, the better. Attempting to learn from a young age will be extremely beneficial as you progress through school, college, and beyond.

 

Children who touch type can work a lot more quickly as they don’t need to look down at their fingers to look for the correct keys. They will spend less time in front of the computer screen in their free time, doing homework.

They can focus on getting their ideas down rather than spending too much time looking for the right keys to press. This makes drafting and editing easier as ideas can be deleted and changed without messy crossing out. It also assists to reduce the risk of repetitive strain injury as pressure is spread out over all their fingers and good posture is encouraged. A touch typist can type faster and produce work more quickly.

 

John Sutherland, professor of English literature at University College, said, ‘You want to put wings on the heels of your children? Teach them to touch-type. They’ll bless you for it.’ Learning to type from a young age can help with spelling because it uses muscle memory to learn word patterns rather than trying to remember spellings by sheer repetition. The majority of assignments, projects, and essays in a secondary school as a whole are expected to be typed. Students who begin to touch type can save a significant amount of time when preparing assignments. Furthermore, knowing how to touch-type doesn’t just affect the speed that children work at, but the quality of their work too. It allows thoughts to be captured quicker, so they’re less likely to forget a great idea as it’s an unconscious practice.


Learning to type can also benefit children with specific learning disabilities such as ADHD, dysgraphia, and dyslexia, who frequently struggle to write by hand. A learning disability, which is not a reflection of a child’s intelligence, will frequently hold a child back in the classroom if they feel nervous, embarrassed, as well as frustrated. Learning to type and then use the keyboard efficiently could be useful in situations like this.

 

For example, typing can help children with ADHD who might otherwise produce messy written work due to a lack of focused attention when writing by hand. Those children with dysgraphia can find it painful to hold a pencil which makes it a struggle to compose hand-written work. They will almost always produce better-written work when typing on a computer keyboard.

With dyslexia, typing can help children to break words up into component sounds. The tactile element required with pressing buttons on a keyboard can help them to manage trickier words and they will find it easier than writing by hand

Touch typing
Touch typing

Typing can help to handwrite as fingers are strengthened and have more dexterity. Typing is a life skill and may seem challenging to master but children learn at different paces.

WPM speed requirement for exams 

The great thing about typing is that not only can it help you speed up your work output, but it is also so much easier to do than writing. Writing requires the pen to be held with one hand and the other hand to guide the working copy or paper, but typing involves simply placing your finger on the keyboard and pressing letters as needed.

Trying to write properly also forces your attention onto the very act of writing, with the result that all you are thinking about is the very act of forming words. Typing instead frees you up from having to worry about shaping letters and moving your hand along a page, so that you can think creatively about the content of what you are writing.

Typing has countless other advantages – it is convenient, it makes it easy to share documents, you can print up your work and it also looks so much better than written work.

As previously stated, starting to learn to type absolutely depends on muscle memory (which is used in sports) rather than memory. Typing quickly is also advantageous for examinations where children may use a laptop. Since errors can be deleted when learning to type, there is less emphasis on neatness, pencil grip, and mistakes.

In terms of typing speeds for children, at the primary school level, a typing speed of 10 wpm is generally regarded as sufficient in order for students to be able to present their work without errors. As children grow older and move to higher grades, faster speeds are recommended in order to keep up with the pace and volume of their educational work. Therefore touch typing is vital. Generally, a typing speed of around 20-25wpm is recommended after Junior Cert, rising to 30 wpm and above at Leaving Cert level. The Department. of Education recommends that your child has a typing speed of 25 words per minute if they are going to use a laptop for typing out their exams.

Word per minute
WPM

Students who do not learn proper touch typing and become self-taught two-finger typists will also find they fall behind as time goes on because these so-called Hunt and Peck typists are expected to achieve a maximum speed of just 30wpm under this method. When you consider that a typing speed of 45wpm and higher is required as a basic skill in many jobs and that an average professional typist types at up to 80wpm, you can see just how useful proper touch typing proves in the real world.

Given that a speaking pace of between 150-160wpm is the rate at which a person can be comfortably heard and understood by an audience and that conversational English is spoken at around 110-150wpm, typing at 80 wpm or more should enable you to catch every second word of what your teacher or lecturer says in school or college. Think how useful this would prove for your study notes!

The reality is that once your touch-type training really kicks in, the whole system clicks into place until, suddenly, you find yourself typing faster and faster, so fast you can hardly keep up! Naturally, the more time you practice touch-typing, the quicker your typing speed becomes. Eventually, you will achieve a maximum typing speed to suit you and your work so that whenever you have to type anything, you will be able to do so at a high speed.

Conclusion

Improving your typing skills is certain to make a person more confident working with computers and more likely to take full advantage of what the device can offer. Are you in search of a course or a productive app to achieve your goal of typing fast like a pro without looking, consider using https://searsol.com/

New Searsol touch typing centre starting in April 2022 in Cabinteely, Dublin 18

Typing classes Cabinteely
Speedskin covers to stop your child from looking down at the keyboard!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Searsol typing classes starting in Cabinteely, Dublin 18.

 

Searsol is starting a new after-school touch-typing class in Cabinteely Community School in Cabinteely starting on Tuesday the 26th of April 2022 at 4 or 5 pm.

 

Our typing classes will be starting on the 26th of April 2022 in Cabinteely Community School and will take place each Tuesday at 4 or 5 pm. Searsol is currently offering a free introductory first session trial of Searsol’s after-school typing courses for any child who is eight years old or older that may be interested in trying out our touch typing course.

Our typing course is specifically designed to develop typing skills for children. Searsol has provided after-school typing courses for children since 2008. We have a high success rate of students that have successfully learned how to touch type. During the course, the student will learn how to touch type correctly assisted by a qualified tutor. We use our own specially designed typing software which is only available through our centre.

This course is suitable for children who want to learn how to type correctly. We work with children with learning differences like Dyslexia or Dyspraxia or children with handwriting problems or who have gained an exemption to use a laptop for exams. To book your free trial place you can contact Searsol on 01-6303384 or book a free trial at our Cabinteely centre by clicking here

Searsol Computer Camps 2022 – children and teenagers – Dundrum, Malahide and Lucan

Searsol computer Camps for children and teenagers run over Easter and the month of July 2022 in Dublin – Dundrum, Malahide and Lucan.

Looking for something productive for your child or teen to do over Easter or Summer? Why not enroll them in our Searsol computer skills camps where they will learn a range of computer skills which will help them through school and beyond.  The camps are taking place in the following locations this year:

There are two levels available to book on our website at: searsolcomputercamps.com/computercamps

Level 1 – children up to the age of 12

Level 2 – teenage computer camps

Level 1 Computer course is suitable for 8 – 12 years old (Primary school) and offers the following:

Computer Camp – Level 1 – 8 -10-year-olds

First Hour – Touch Typing

Typewiz typing tutor – designed specifically for children.

Touch Typing – the first hour of the course is dedicated to learning how to touch type. Using our typing tutor Typewiz. Your child will be shown how to type correctly using their eight fingers. Helping them to improve their typing skills and saving them time doing their homework/projects for schools

Second Hour – Email / Word Processing / Presentation Slides

Email – Learn how to compose email reply, forward

Email fundamentals – Compose, reply, forward messages, and add attachments. Learn how to send an email and become confident about how to use email.

Create word processing documents

Word Processing – introduction to word processing.  Your child will learn how to use word processing to create documents. They will learn how to format, insert images, change fonts and sizes. Giving them the confidence to use word processing to create documents for school homework and projects.

Create presentation slides similar to PowerPoint

Presentation slides – Your child will learn how to create presentation slides similar to PowerPoint. They will learn how to insert images, add animation, insert video, formatting. This will give them the knowledge to create slides for classroom presentations.

Third Hour – Fun Stuff – Design / Create / Draw and Animate

In the last how your Child will get to do the following:

  • Design their online comic book.
  • Creating their own avatar or character
  • Design and print birthday cards.
  • Download images from Google images
  • Creating their own Picture collages.
  • Draw and edit their own images.
  • Uploading, editing, and cropping pictures.
  • Image design
  • Introduction to coding
    And much more…
Create birthday cards
Comic strips
Design and Create picture collages

Level 2 Computer course is suitable for Teenagers and offers the following:

Teenager computer Camp – level 2

First Hour – Touch Typing

Your teen will learn how to touch-type using our Typewiz typing tutor. Specifically designed for children to learn how to type fast and effectively.

Second Hour – Email / Word Processing / Presentation Slides / Spreadsheets

Email fundamentals – setting up and using email correctly. Compose, reply, forward messages and add attachments. Sending business emails.

Word Processing – Intermediate word exercises, formatting creating tables, borders, etc.

Presentation slides – create, animate, insert images, format, insert tables, add videos.

Spreadsheet – creating, add function, minus function, sum function.

Third Hour – Fun Stuff – Design / Create / Draw and Animate

In the last how your Teen will get to do the following:

  • Creating their own online comic book.
  • Design their own avatar and character
  • Download images from google images
  • Creating their own Picture collages.
  • Draw and edit your own images.
  • Uploading, editing and cropping pictures.
  • Image design
  • Coding
  • And much more…

To book a place on the course go to https://searsolcomputercamps.com/computercamps

Why is it better for your child to learn how to type than to write?

Why is it better for your child to learn how to type than to write?

Before we go into detail as to why it is better for your child for them to type than to write, it must be first made clear that writing is not a bad thing for your child and we do encourage that if they can pick being able to write easy, then they should continue to write as well as learning the skill of typing. Typing is something which is becoming more and more prominent nowadays so getting your child to learn this skill is extremely necessary and will be of benefit to them for the entirety of their life.

Typing

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Firstly, let’s look at touch typing. Touch-typing is something which is of benefit to everyone, not only people who may struggle to write properly. When being able to touch type not only will you be able to type faster, but you will be able to do this without the need of having to look at the screen on the computer. Things like transcribing are also made a whole lot easier, due to the fact that when you’re touch-typing your eyes can stay on the paper and you can ensure that your figures will be able to do the job when typing.

 

Now let’s look at reasons why touch typing is a skill worth in.

 

Let’s look at a few of the key reasons as to why touch typing is such an important skill:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Comfort will improve:  when a child starts to learn how to touch type, they will then become much more comfortable with how their hands are operating when they are typing. This is because when you can have your hands centered on the keyboard it will allow you to place your fingers more evenly across the keyboard.

 

Fewer mistakes made: with touch typing, this will be more effective than say a hunt and peck type method as it will lead to less errors by the individual being made. Now of course at first, mistakes will obviously be made when you are trying to get used to aligning your fingers in the correct position on the keyboard and keeping your eyes fixated to the screen, but once you are used to this method it will become much easier to adjust any errors as you will be already looking at the screen to notice the mistake made.

 

Typing speed increases: as touched upon on the previous point, keeping your eyes off the keyboard and fixated on the screen will give you a huge boost in your ability to type faster. Think about note-taking in the classroom or even at work. It often happens that notes are being taken at such a quick rate that you will struggle to be able to take down all the necessary information that is being said, and this can lead to crucial bits of information not being taken down by the individual. What touch typing does is not necessarily ensure that every single bit of note-taking will be taken down but it will vastly improve the speed in which a person can do this. Mistakes may be made along the way but at least you will have the bulk of what is being said down and you can adjust and fix this information later.

 

 

 

 

Now let’s look at an example of a touching typing course which is known as Typewiz. Typewiz touch typing lessons are designed in a way to be short and encourage the child to complete their next lesson by achieving rewards and moving up leaderboards. Below is a little deeper insight into why you should get your child started with Typewiz.

Typewiz typing tutor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Typing games: Typewiz has fun and interactive games for your child to enjoy. Typewiz allows your child to compete with kids in their age range and they can try improving by moving up leaderboards. A virtual coin is used for each game and will measure your child’s performance of how they’re getting on in the course, which will then motivate them to complete exercises as fast and efficiently as possible.

–          Avatar rewards: Typewiz allows your child to earn an avatar as they complete each lesson, and these include many cool-looking avatars which will motivate the child to focus and do the best they can in order to achieve their desired avatar.

–          Modular design: the modular design which Typewiz provides is something that is easy on the eye for children and really creates an amazing environment for children to learn how to touch type.

–          Reporting: This is of huge benefit to parents of the children, as Typewiz offers a report showing how your child is getting on and progressing along throughout the duration of the course. The report will give you key information such as exercises your child has completed, average accuracy, highest score, and much, much more. This information can be shown weekly, over the last 6 months, the past year, or all the time. Typewiz will show you both accuracy and words per minute graphs in the report, so it can easily be available to view and print off either.

 

 

Now after looking at an example of a touch typing game and why it would be of benefit to your child, it is clear that typing is something which is essential to learn at an early age and would of be of great use to any young person. In school writing is of course still used for exams and note-taking by students, however with colleges now really putting emphasis on doing exams from home on computers due to the pandemic we find ourselves in, it would not be of any surprise if this was to be the way forward for learning in the near future.

Typewiz Free trial

 

 

Does your child have poor handwriting speed? How can typing help?

Does your child have poor handwriting speed? How can typing help?

 

 

 

 

 

 

As children growing up, one of the first skills we are thought to do when in school is being able to write properly. It usually begins with kids being taught how to write letters or shapes individually and teaching the child what the correct form to use when they are writing. Some children pick up this skill quickly at a young age, whereas others may tend to struggle greatly with this and begin to fall behind people their age. This tends to pose the question to parents about how they go about rectifying this issue that they are having with their child’s handwriting issues. This is where the ability to have your child learn how to type at a young age will give endless benefits to them which we will go further into below.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Learning to touch type – you may be wondering what touch-typing means. What’s the difference between regular typing and touch typing? Well, touch typing is where one types but without looking at the keyboard. By doing this you will constantly be staring at your screen so that if you keep making mistakes you will be able to notice them quicker than say if you were constantly looking down at your keyboard. The benefits of being able to touch-type properly are endless.

  Touch typing, if learnt as young as possible, will be of massive benefit to an individual as it will become a long-term skill, whether at home, school, college, or even in the work environment.

  Touch typing helps your child to type faster as well as more accurately, without having to look at the keyboard every now and then.

  Once your child is touch typing, this will become an unconscious action to them, which will then allow them to become more creative.

  Learning how to type at a young age will increase the likelihood of the child developing less bad habits, than if we were to start learning this at an older age.

  Touch typing helps children that have dyslexia, as some children who are dyslexic will find it easier to touch type rather than handwrite. This is due to the tactile element of pressing the keyboard is able to help with being able to manage difficult words.

  Drafting and editing can be made easier for children by touch typing as you can play around with your work by being able to move paragraphs, delete parts of the text that are no longer needed which is something that one does not have the luxury of doing if they are handwriting.

  By being able to successfully touch-type, will then allow for the person to really focus on their content. While touch typing will greatly enhance the ability for a child to be able to type at a fast pace it will also improve the quality of their work too. And because of this, they will be able to put their main focus into the quality of the content which they are producing.

 

 

 

 

 

Searsol  – Searsol was formed back in 2007 and has been teaching children how to be able to touch type properly. Previously we really delved into what are the benefits of a child being able to touch type, and one should look no further than Typewiz if they want to get their child learning how to perfect this skill in a fun and interactive way. Typewiz touch typing lessons are designed in a way to be short and encourage the child to complete their next lesson by achieving rewards and moving up leaderboards. Below is a little deeper insight into why you should get your child started with Typewiz.

  Typing games: Typewiz has fun and interactive games for your child to enjoy. Typewiz allows your child to compete with kids in their age range and they can try improving by moving up leaderboards. A virtual coin is used for each game and will measure your child’s performance of how they’re getting on in the course, which will then motivate them to complete exercises as fast and efficiently as possible.

  Avatar rewards: Typewiz allows your child to earn an avatar as they complete each lesson, and these include many cool looking avatars that will motivate the child to focus and do the best they can in order to achieve their desired avatar.

  Modular design: the modular design which Typewiz provides is something that is easy on the eye for children and really creates an amazing environment for children to learn how to touch type.

  Reporting: This is of huge benefit to parents of the children, as Typewiz offers a report showing how your child is getting on and progressing along throughout the duration of the course. The report will give you key information such as exercises your child has completed, average accuracy, highest score and much, much more. This information can be shown weekly, over the last 6 months, the past year or all the time. Typewiz will show you both accuracy and words per minute graphs in the report, so it can easily be available to view and print off either.

 

 

Overall you can see that there are endless benefits when it comes to a child being able to learn how to be able to type at a young age if they are struggling with their handwriting. The aim of this blog was really to give you an insight into not only all of the benefits that come along with your child being able to type properly but also the fun that can be had along the way in their learning process and we see this through games like Typewiz. Typing is something which is a vital skill for all ages nowadays and as time goes on the importance of being able to type will not become less vital.

 

 

How to help a child who has dyslexia

 

 

 

HOW TO HELP A CHILD WHO HAS DYSLEXIA

 

About dyslexia:

Firstly, it is key to gain an understanding of what dyslexia really is. Dyslexia can be seen as a learning disorder that involves difficulty with reading due to problems of identifying speech sounds and learning how they relate to letters and words, which is known as decoding. Dyslexia is something that is more common than one may think as it affects 10% of the population of Ireland, around 450,000 people.

An interesting statistic relating to children in the classroom shows that on average three children in every classroom will have dyslexia. When looking at how dyslexic difficulties occur, it goes on a continuum from mild to severe. It is known that people who are dyslexic may experience a greater degree of stress and frustration when learning, which will then relate in a higher case of anxiety most particularly in relation to literacy acquisition.

It is vital that a child’s needs are identified as young and early as possible so that the relative gap between pupils with dyslexia and their peers don’t grow over time. Support at any age will be of benefit to this learning difficulty, of course, however, the earlier this can be identified the better it is for the person having difficulties. When it comes to identifying the signs that your child may be dyslexic, some of these points may help you know;

 Struggle to learn simple rhymes

  1. Speech delay
  2. Unable to follow instructions
  3. Are unable to tell left from right 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Is dyslexia something that is curable?

Dyslexia is something that isn’t necessarily an illness but is something that a person will have throughout their entire life? However, by taking the appropriate measures towards understanding the difficulties and challenges are that come with having dyslexia it can then be made much easier to live with. When really delving into dyslexia and its impact it will have on a person, it is something that is a brain-based issue with language.

That is why kids will have issues with being able to work with the sounds of language. It’s important to remember that reading issues may still exist for children with dyslexia even after they have been able to learn and read properly. The ability for a child to read that has dyslexia is more so a mechanical one. This is why children which have dyslexia will best be able to learn with reading programs that are systematic ones and take an explicit multisensory approach to. By doing this it will enhance the likelihood of a child to be able to successfully identify words.  

Methods to help your child live with dyslexia: The previous point leads nicely into how you can go about having your child be able to live with dyslexia. If your kid was to be diagnosed with dyslexia, beware that this does not mean that your child will never be able to read properly, that’s why these methods below will go a long way to helping your child read to the fullest of their potential;

  1. Multi-sensory introduction in decoding skills
  2. Individual guidance
  3. Being pulled out of class for extra help for more than once a week
  4. Being taught decoding skills
  5. Children are taught comprehension skills, in order to help them understand what they are reading. 

 We at Searsol put great emphasis on the fact that one of the most important ways for a child to be helped with their dyslexia is to make them feel comfortable when they are trying to read or type.  Being able to create games where children can gain accomplishments and rewards can greatly enhance a child’s experience and willingness to learn also.

How to help a child when stuck at home:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

With covid being so prominent in our lives today, this means that schools are being shut for long periods of time and this is something which may be having a massively detrimental effect on your child’s ability to learn and improve in school. These children are losing invaluable time when it comes to their education so it is vital that these children are able to stay productive at home and continue to learn along the way. There are endless ways in which you as a parent can go about helping your child to help your child who has dyslexia at home;

 

  1. Encourage children to read: The importance of having your child be able to read is one which can go under the radar but this is vital if you want your child to improve with their learning abilities. Not only this but it is also important to challenge your child by questioning them on what they read so that you know that their reading is being of actual benefit to them.
  2. Have the child work independently: In the last point we talked about the importance of you as a parent posing questions to your child. You should also encourage your child to work in an independent manner to ask you questions about if they are doing their work right so that you can then give them advice on whether they are right or wrong with what they are doing.
  3. Give praise to boost morale: With children who have dyslexia, they are just like the rest of us people and they will tend to thrive with confidence and self-esteem when they are being praised for the work they have done. You as a parent should be very encouraging towards your child when they are learning, beware not to always praise and prepare to criticise when appropriate, but most importantly act in a positive manner when helping your child.

Encourage touch typing:

The ability for a child being able to touch type is one that can be of huge benefit to a child who is dyslexic. We at Searsol encourage children to learn to touch type from a young age as it is a skill that can be long term at home, school, college and even in the work environment when your child grows older. The goal of touch typing is to help one type faster as well as accurately, without having to look at their keyboard all the time. Once your child is successfully able to touch type, they will then be typing in an unconscious manner which will allow your child to become more creative.

Learn how to type
Learn how to type at any of Searsol Centres

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you’re interested in a free trial at any of our centres in Dublin or Cork. Click on our free trial on searsol.com

 

 

What can you do to overcome your child’s poor handwriting?

Poor handwriting

Poor handwriting

What can you do to overcome your child’s poor handwriting?

 

Does your child have poor handwriting and is struggling to complete their homework? Does your child take a long time for them to do their homework? Is the quality of the handwriting produced by your child legible? What can you do to improve this situation for your child? Do you want a life that is free from the stress and anxiety of trying to get them to complete their homework? 

 

Definition of poor handwriting:

First off let’s define what poor handwriting is. According to Chivers (1999) – poor handwriting is a deficiency in the ability to write, primarily handwriting, but also coherence. Poor handwriting is a transcription disability, meaning that it is a writing disorder associated with impaired handwriting, orthographic coding (orthography, the storing process of written words and processing the letters in those words), and finger sequencing (the movement of muscles required to write).

 

Causes of poor handwriting

 

The main two causes of poor handwriting are deficiencies in balance sense or body awareness.   

Balance sense

Balance sense
Balance sense

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The balance sense is located in our inner ear.  Children who have experienced any of the following are more likely to have difficulties with their balance sense:

  • chronic ear infections
  • premature birth
  • neglect and trauma in infancy
  • other neurological conditions such as autism

Child jumping

When this sense is not developed properly, children are likely to have difficulty with balance, jumping, hopping, skipping, sitting still, concentration, managing fear or anxiety and learning to read or poor handwriting skills.

 

Body Awareness

body awareness

This sense is located in the muscles and joints all over our body and is often called the body awareness sense as it tells our brain where our body is in relation to itself and other things.

 

Children with poor body awareness often present with the following conditions:

  • appear clumsy
  • are rough
  • break things
  • bump into things
  • unable to sit still for long periods of time
  • poor concentration.
  • difficulty with reading 
  • Poor handwriting skills

 

These two senses (balance and body)  are the building blocks for all other skills. It doesn’t matter how much we practice with our child on handwriting skills, it won’t improve because of deficiency in their balance and body senses.

 

Your child may have a good pencil grasp and lovely letter formation but if they don’t have a functioning balance sense then their writing is likely to be much slower, messy, difficult to read than other children.

How do you improve your child’s poor handwriting skills?

You can improve your child with poor handwriting skills by trying the following:

 

Strengthen Fine Motor Skills

scissors cutting

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Increasing hand strength and finger dexterity can help your child get more control over the pen and improve their handwriting.  Encourage your child on tasks like cutting with scissors, using a screwdriver, sewing or knitting.

 

Pencil Grip

Pencil grip
Pencil grip

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A good grip could help reduce fatigue and prevent muscle cramps, which may help to improve handwriting.

 

Upper Body strength

 

 

 

 

 

Encourage your child to build upper body strength through sports,  swimming and gym weights. These will help strengthen and stabilise the shoulder muscles to free up the hand muscles for handwriting.

 

Frequent Breaks

Take a break
Take a break

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If your child tires easily or becomes distracted, then let them have a quick break as opposed to continuing on and their handwriting deteriorates. 

 

Pick your battles

Pick your battles

Pick your battles

 

Decide which subjects require good handwriting and which subjects you can get away with poor handwriting. 

 

Typing skills

Typewiz.com – be a wiz at typing!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Instead of writing out all their homework. Why not get them to type it out using a laptop or tablet? By typing out their homework, it helps not only to be able to read the text they produce but also allows you to review the document and make changes if required. By learning how to type correctly, your child overcomes poor handwriting and uses assistive technology to their advantage. 

If you want your child to learn how to type at one of our centres, you can book a free trial assessment at https://searsol.com/find-centers/

How long does it take to learn to touch type?

How long does it take to learn to touch type?

It’s a question that we have been asked several times before and to be honest it’s a difficult one to answer.

Definition of Touch Typing:

Touch typing is the ability to type without looking down at the keyboard. A person who can touch type will know all the letter locations on the keyboard through muscle memory. The term is often used to refer to a specific form of touch typing that involves placing the eight fingers in a horizontal row along the middle of the keyboard

Home Keys

Touch typing is a skill that needs to be learned and it becomes better as you practice using the correct technique. The correct technique is to place your fingers on the home keys, left hand fingers should start with the little resting on the A button and the main index finger on the F button on the keyboard. The right-hand fingers should start with the index finger on the J button and the little finger on the semicolon button (;). If you are interested in learning how to touch type, check out our new typing tutor Typewiz which is specifically aimed at teaching children how to touch type in a fun and interactive way. Also, see our youtube video below on How to touch type using Typewiz which explains the correct procedure to learn how to touch type using our typing tutor Typewiz.

 

A range of factors come into play in deciding how long it will take to learn how to touch type.

Factors to consider are the concentration, motivation, age of the student, and if the student has any learning difficulties.

Concentration:

If a student has poor or weak concentration, then it will take them a lot longer to learn how to touch type. As touch typing requires a lot of concentration and persistence in learning where the keys are on the keyboard.

Motivation:

If a student is not motivated to learn touch typing, then, unfortunately, they will never learn how to touch type. If they don’t see the benefits of touch typing and rather do it their own way then a student will never learn to touch type correctly and will revert to their own ways (Hunt and Peck method).

Age:

The younger the student age the longer they will take to learn how to touch type. At Searsol, we believe the best age to start to touch type is the age of eight. We feel any younger than eight years old, a student is just not ready to learn to touch type successfully due to the size of their hands and lack of concentration.

Learning difference:

If a student has a learning difficulty such as dyslexia, dyspraxia (DCD), or dysgraphia, then this student will take longer to learn how to touch type compared to a student that doesn’t have these learning difficulties. We feel for these students classroom learning is the best solution for a child that has learning differences. At Searsol, we offer a free trial for students who want to experience our classroom learning. A free trial is available by clicking on the following link (Ireland only). We also offer a free seven-day trial online click on the following link

 

How long does it take to learn how to touch-typing?

So going back to the question, how long does it take to learn to touch type. An average student without learning differences would learn to touch type within eight to ten hours. They might be touch typing at a very slow speed (8 – 15  words per minute).

Bronze standard – 15 words per minute

 

A student who attains 15 words per minute or greater will be rewarded with our bronze badge on Typewiz.  This would take approximately 10 hours to achieve for the average student doing the Typewiz course. 

Silver standard – 25 words per minute

The next level on Typewiz is our silver badge which is 25 words or greater. An average student would need to do around 30 hours on Typewiz to get to this level.

Gold standard – 40 words per minute

Forty words per minute is when a student can touch type faster than they can write which is an amazing achievement! It is the gold standard on Typewiz and for most students very difficult to achieve. It requires a student to put in an additional forty hours of practice using Typwiz. 

If a student achieves the gold badge on Typewiz. Then this is a great advantage to have for a student, as they progress through secondary school, third level, and onto work. Typing faster than writing without ever having to look down at the keyboard!

 

Benefits of learning how to touch type

Touch typing, also known as keyboarding or typing, is a valuable skill that allows individuals to type quickly and accurately without looking at the keyboard. Here are some of the benefits of touch typing:

  1. Improved productivity: When you can type quickly and accurately, you can get more work done in less time. This can be especially beneficial in a professional setting, where typing speed is often an important factor in job performance.

  2. Reduced risk of injury: Repetitive strain injuries, such as carpal tunnel syndrome, can be caused by incorrect typing technique or excessive typing. Touch typing helps you use the correct typing technique, reducing the risk of injury.

  3. Easier to type on multiple devices: If you can touch type, you can easily switch between typing on a laptop, desktop, or even a mobile device without having to look at the keyboard.

  4. Increased accuracy: When you look at the keyboard while typing, you are more likely to make mistakes. Touch typing allows you to type without looking at the keyboard, which can help you type more accurately.

  5. Improved memory and cognitive skills: Touch typing requires you to remember the location of keys on the keyboard, which can help improve your memory and cognitive skills.

In addition, touch typing can be especially helpful for individuals with dyslexia, as it can make it easier to type accurately and efficiently. If you are struggling with typing due to dyslexia, learning to touch type can be an important strategy for improving your typing skills.

Tips and strategies for learning to touch type:

Learning to touch type can be a valuable skill that can improve your productivity and reduce the risk of injury from typing. Here are some tips and strategies for learning to touch type:

  1. Start with the home row: The home row is the row of keys that your fingers rest on when you are not typing. It includes the keys A, S, D, F, J, K, L, and ;. These keys form the basis of touch typing, so it’s important to start with them. Practice typing the letters on the home row until you can do it without looking at the keyboard.

  2. Use typing games and exercises: Typing games and exercises are a fun way to practice and improve your touch typing skills. There are many free typing games and exercises available online, and they can be an effective way to practice different typing techniques and improve your speed and accuracy.

  3. Position your hands correctly: Proper hand positioning is important for touch typing. Your hands should be positioned on the keyboard so that your fingers are resting on the home row keys. Your thumbs should be on the space bar, and your index fingers should be on the F and J keys.

  4. Take breaks: Typing for long periods of time can lead to strain and fatigue. Make sure to take breaks and stretch your hands and fingers regularly to help prevent injury.

  5. Use a typing tutor: A typing tutor is a software program that can help you learn to touch type. Typing tutors provide lessons and exercises to help you practice different typing techniques and improve your speed and accuracy.

  6. Practice regularly: The more you practice, the better you will get at touch typing. Make sure to set aside time to practice regularly, even if it’s just a few minutes a day. As you practice, you’ll find that your typing speed and accuracy will improve.

By following these tips and strategies, you can learn to touch type and improve your typing skills. With practice and persistence, you’ll be able to type quickly and accurately without looking at the keyboard.

Typewiz.com – a new innovative way to learn how to touch type!

Typewiz online typing tutor for kids

 

Our new typing tutor typewiz.com  is now available to any student that wants to learn how to touch type.

  • Typewiz is a new fun and interactive way to learn to touch type.
  • Students get to select different avatars as they progress up the lessons.
  • Students can earn coins based on their performance on the course.
  • Coins can then be used in our games arcade where each coin spent allows the student to access one game.
  • Students can earn different word-per-minute badges (Bronze, Silver, or Gold) as they become faster at typing.
  • Students can earn lesson badges as they progress up the lessons.
  • Realistic hands with a green finger show the user what keyboard button to press.
  • Graphs of all previous percentage scores with Words Per Minute (WPM) are available to access the student at all times.
  • Typewiz is a self-paced course that allows students to work at their own pace in a classroom environment or at home.
  • Typewiz is also available through our Searsol centres monitored by our professional Searsol tutors (Ireland only). 

If you are interested in finding out more information about Typewiz. Visit our website at www.typewiz.com  Free seven-day trial is available.

 

Why do you need to touch type in the 21st century?

Typewiz.com – be a wiz at touch-typing!

 

 

 

 

 

We were recently why was there still a need to touch type in the 21st century. It was a good question and with the advent of new technologies, such as smartphones, tablets, hybrid laptops and text to speech. Maybe there isn’t such a need for touch-typing or was there?

 Hunt and Peck

The hunt and peck typing method is a very popular method to input text on the keyboard. This is where a person types but moves his fingers around the keyboard until the find the correct letters. Where a person can type sufficiently using the hunt and peck method, it is still error-prone and can reduce the efficiency of the person typing compared to a person who can touch type. 

Touch typing/keyboarding

Touch typing (also called keyboarding) is typing without using the sense of sight to find the keys. Specifically, a touch typist will know their location on the keyboard through muscle memory. In today’s competitive job market, it is important for anyone applying for any job that involves the use of computers to learn to touch type. And it is not stretching it to suggest being able to type fast without looking at the keyboard is a 21st-century basic skill in computers.

Advantages of touch typing

The main advantages of touch typing are as follows:

Speed

Touch typing training can improve an individual’s typing speed and accuracy dramatically. The accepted average typing speed is 40 WPM (words per minute), professional career typists can exceed 100 WPM repeatedly and continuously (secretarial, data entry, etc.). Every individual learns at a different pace, and routine practice is required to maintain a high typing speed and accuracy.

Reduced switching of attention

A touch typist does not need to look down at the keyboard (that is obscured with fingers and maybe poorly lit) and other areas that require attention. This increases productivity and reduces the number of errors.

Overall the payback from learning how to touch type outways the inefficiency of other input methods. Once you have the skill it will stay with you for the rest of your life. So how do you start to touch-type? Why not try our seven days free trial of our typing tutor Typewiz? For more information go to www.typewiz.com

 

Now that you have been awarded a laptop exemption to type out your Junior or Leaving cert – what do you do next?

Searsol after school touch typing classes
Searsol after school touch typing classes

Now that you have been awarded a laptop exemption to type out your Junior or Leaving Cert – what next?

Having to sit through State exams answering questions with pen and paper for hours at a time is all very well for those for whom writing poses no problems, but what about students who struggle to form letters and words?

Thankfully the Irish State Examinations Commission registers the fact that many students today have difficulty with writing. In recognition of this and the fact that typing is now the accepted professional version of writing, exemptions are now readily available for those seeking to type rather than write their exam responses.

If you or your child has already been awarded an exemption to use a laptop/word processor for your Junior/Leaving Cert due to a handwriting impairment, here at Searsol we extend our congratulations.

For those still in the process of applying for the exemption, please note that the Department of Education will be looking for proof that your child can, or is in the process of learning how to type. At the end of the day, the exemption will be granted on the basis that your child’s typing skills are better than their handwriting skills.

Searsol touch-typing courses

In order to ensure your child masters correct touch-typing skills, Searsol runs a series of after-school touch-typing classes for children and young adults that are designed to help each individual learn correct touch-typing practice at their own pace.

Searsol provides touch typing courses nationwide. Our classes are delivered in a classroom setting. We use our own touch typing tutor Typewiz which consists of a series of lessons to help students advance from beginner to proficient touch typist. Tutors work individually and collectively with students to help them progress through the course in order to gain proficiency. They are monitored by trained tutors who check that they are doing the correct finger placement.

Students can revise over previously completed exercises at home using their own login details.

Please feel free to get in touch with your nearest Searsol provider – course details are available here on our website.

Typewiz is also available to access from the home. You can sign up to Typewiz by going to Typewiz.com

Exemption guidelines

According to the guidelines for State exams, as set out by the State Examinations Commission, the use of mechanical aid, such as a word processor, is appropriate where it can be established that a candidate’s ability to produce a legible script is compromised.

There are two separate categories under which a student may be deemed eligible for this exemption from handwriting, as follows:

  1. Illegible handwriting – which renders a script unintelligible due to the frequency of spelling/grammar/punctuation errors.
  2. Slow writing – where the rate of writing is so slow that it renders a student unable to complete exams.

In order to apply for an exemption from writing, students must submit a completed Junior Certificate/Leaving Certificate reasonable accommodations application form, outlining the particular difficulty, and this must be signed by the school principal.

The Commission accepts the school’s confirmation on the application as sufficient evidence to permit an exemption.

Once you have been awarded your exemption to use a word processor, you will also be exempt from having your exam answer assessed in regard to spelling, punctuation, or grammar. This applies specifically to exams in any language subject (Irish, English, French, Spanish, etc). However, students granted the use of a word processor must ensure spell-check and autocorrect are turned off.

Further info on Reasonable Accommodations for Junior and Leaving Certificate Examinations can be found on www.examinations.ie

What typing speed do you need for state exams?

There is no official guidance from the department of education on the exact typing speed your child should be at. Searsol recommends that your child have a typing speed of 25 word per minute or greater. This would be our silver grade on typing classes.

State Examinations Commission

The State Examinations Commission now approves exemptions for Junior Cert students can also be carried through at Leaving Certificate.

The Commission also agreed that exemptions can be granted in cases where dyslexia has not been formally diagnosed. Welcoming this progress, the Dyslexia Association of Ireland issued a statement, as follows:

The accommodations are intended to limit the impact of the candidate’s disability on their exam performance, while not giving the candidate an unfair advantage.

The options students with dyslexia can apply for if they meet the criteria are:
• Access to a Reader
• Use of a Recording Device or Word Processor/Laptop
• Access to a Scribe
• Waiver from the assessment of spelling, grammar, and punctuation in the language subjects

Accommodations at Third Level

Many third-level colleges and examination bodies make provision for dyslexic students taking written exams.  These provisions can include being given extra time, being allowed to use a word processor/computer, having the specific difficulty is taken into account when marking the exam paper, etc.

Students should consult with the Disability Officer in their college, their Tutor, or Course Director, to find out precisely what provisions may be available.

Please contact your nearest Searsol after school typing centre for details on our touch-typing classes to ensure your child has the chance to perform at their best in State exams. Your child can also access Typewiz.com from the comfort of your home. Go to Typewiz.com for more details.

Why touch typing is beneficial for children with dyspraxia (DCD)?

Why touch typing is beneficial for children with dyspraxia (DCD)?
Why touch typing is beneficial for children with dyspraxia (DCD)?

Why touch typing is beneficial for children with dyspraxia (DCD)?

 

Dyspraxia (DCD) is a difficulty with thinking out, planning, and carrying out sensory/motor tasks. A recent study of nearly 7,000 seven and eight-year-olds in the UK found that just under two children in every 100 may have dyspraxia. This study used strict criteria for diagnosing the condition, which may explain why other sources suggest that six or eight people in every 100 may have dyspraxia.

Dyspraxia is more common in boys and sometimes runs in families. It may also occur alongside other conditions, such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder ADHD.

Dyspraxia can make the process of writing laborious and even painful. This is why touch typing (keyboarding) is so frequently recommended for those with dyspraxia. Becoming more familiar with the keyboard or learning to touch type (being able to type with multiple fingers without looking at the keyboard) can be very helpful for children.

Once students are able to touch type successfully with accuracy and speed. This can help students unlock their potential and transfer easily their ideas onto electronic format without the frustration experienced when handwriting.  Creativity is unlocked and the student’s self-esteem greatly enhanced.

The keyboard has many important advantages:

  • It increases legibility and clarity of presentation
  • Increased speed of the input
  • Spelling – learning physical letter patterns on the keyboard can be helpful with the spelling of some words
  • Reduces the physical pressure and concentration of handwriting- pressing a key can be much easier than manipulating a pen or pencil
  • Editing work is easier
  • Confidence. The keyboard may allow the child to record work more independently and to produce the required work in the time allowed.

At Searsol, we have worked with children with dyspraxia to teach them how to learn to touch type. Children with dyspraxia need careful guidance and help so they can master the skills of touch typing.  Searsol offers touch typing courses in our typing centres

Touch typing compared to voice recognition software

Kids typing tutor
Typewiz.com – be a wiz at typing!

v’svoice

Touch typing (also called keyboarding) is typing without using the sense of sight to find the keys. Specifically, a touch typist will know their location on the keyboard through muscle memory. In today’s competitive job market, it is important for anyone applying for any job that involves the use of computers to learn to touch type. And it is not stretching it to suggest being able to type fast without looking at the keyboard is a 21st-century basic skill in computers.

Voice-recognition software allows you to convert voice to text. This has been available on computers and software such as Dragon Software, Text Aloud or Express scribe has allowed computer users to convert voice to text. But put it on a smartphone, and it comes to life. All of the frustrations of trying to control your PC by voice, fiddling for a microphone, repeating yourself, again and again, resisting the urge to relent and turn to your trusty keyboard.

These are eliminated when you use the same technology on your mobile phone. Mobile apps such as Google voice, Vlingo and Siri have allowed people to convert voice to text on the go with ease. So is the new way of doing things and should we not bother to learn how to type as these apps are doing the same job as typing?

The main disadvantage of voice recognition software are as follows:

Lack of Accuracy and Misinterpretation

Voice recognition software won’t always put your words on the screen completely accurately. Programs cannot understand the context of language the way that humans can, leading to errors that are often due to misinterpretation. When you talk to people, they decode what you say and give it a meaning. Voice recognition software can do this but may not be capable of choosing the correct meaning. For example, it cannot always differentiate between homonyms, such as “their” and “there.” It may also have problems with slang, technical words and acronyms.

Time Costs and Productivity

You might think that computerising a process speeds it up, but this isn’t necessarily true of voice recognition systems, and you may have to invest more time than you expected into the process. You’ll have to factor in time to review and edit to correct errors. Some programs adapt to your voice and speech patterns over time; this may slow down your workflow until the program is up to speed. You’ll also have to learn how to use the system. For example, you must find the right pace and tone — if you talk too fast or indistinctly, you’ll increase spelling and grammar errors. Getting used to using a system’s commands and speaking punctuation out loud is not always easy. This can affect the flow and speed of your speech.

Accents and speech recognition

Voice recognition systems can have problems with accents. Even though some may learn to your speech patterns over time, you have to learn to talk consistently and clearly at all times to minimize errors. If you mumble, talk too fast or run words into each other, the software will not always be able to cope. Programs may also have problems recognizing speech as normal if your voice changes, say when you have a cold, cough, sinus or throat problem.

Background Noise Interference

To get the best out of voice recognition software, you need a quiet environment. Systems don’t work so well if there is a lot of background noise. They may not be able to differentiate between your speech, other people talking and other ambient noise, leading to transcription mix-ups and errors. This can cause problems if you work in a busy office or a noisy environment. Wearing microphones or noise-cancelling headsets can help voice recognising software reduce the effects of noise.

Physical Side Effects

If you use voice recognition technology frequently, you may experience some physical discomfort and vocal problems. Talking for extended periods can cause hoarseness, dry mouth, muscle fatigue, temporary loss of voice and vocal strain. The fact that you aren’t talking naturally may make this worse and you may need to learn how to protect your voice if you’ll use a program regularly.

To summarise voice recognition can have its benefits, such as being able to input voice to text on the go using smartphones. But the main disadvantages outline above makes voice technology a handy add on to the basic input of touch typing. So there will always be a need to touch type. Why not learn how to touch typing using our online typing tutor Typewiz designed specifically for children? More details are available on Typewiz.com Searsol provides touch typing courses in check out the nearest typing centre near you by clicking on the following link.

 

 

Hunt and Peck typing method versus touch-typing. Which method is preferred when learning how to type?

Typewiz.com – be a wiz at touch-typing!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Touch-typing is a skill that grows from training your fingers to automatically hit the correct characters on a keyboard in order to type the words and sentences you wish to compose. The method is called touch-typing because, over time, your fingers are trained to find the relevant letters by touch as opposed to look – so that you no longer need to look at the keyboard. This frees you up to look directly ahead at the screen and concentrate on what you are typing and how you want to present it. Thus making you more efficient and capable of multitasking.

Hunt and Peck typing, on the other hand, refers to typing through looking at the keyboard, hunting around for the character key you wish to press – and then pecking at it! The Hunt and Peck method is less efficient as it forces your attention onto the keyboard in order to find characters, instead of onto the screen, where you need to look to monitor your work.  The hunt and peck method of typing is not a method as such, it is not fixed, therefore there is no rhyme or reason to it. Consequently, any finger can hit any key at any time, which leaves little room for developing proficiency or typing speed. Thus making you less efficient and incapable of multitasking.

How touch-typing works:

The QWERTY keyboard – so-called from the word QWERTY – which can be made up from the letters on the top row of the keyboard – is specifically designed to work for touch-typing. The layout of the entire keyboard complete with all letters of the alphabet, punctuation marks, numbers, and symbols, is fashioned in a manner that optimises correct finger movement for touch-typing. If you want to read more about the QWERTY keyboard check out our blog on why the QWERTY keyboard has survived so long compared to other easier input methods.

In essence, the method entails teaching individual fingers specific letters and characters to press on the keyboard – and then memorising these movements. Each finger types a fixed selection of letters and nothing else. Once all fingers know where they must go – so to speak – they can work in combination to efficiently and effectively cover the entire alphabet and keyboard.

With practice, touch typing becomes much easier and once the system ‘clicks’, the learner can go on to achieve higher typing speeds and build up their words-per-minute rate.

Touch-typing – correct technique

Touch typing is the ability to type without looking down at the keyboard. It is a skill that needs to be learned and it becomes better as you practice using the correct technique. The correct technique is to place your fingers on the home keys, left-hand fingers should start with the little resting on A button and the main index finger on F button on the keyboard. The right-hand fingers should start with the index finger on J button and the little finger on the ; semicolon button. If you are interested in learning how to touch type, check out our new typing tutor Typewiz which is specifically aimed at teaching children how to touch type in a fun and interactive way.

On a practical basis, the system can be explained as follows:

Typewiz.com – be a wiz at typing!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Left hand – what letters your left fingers should be typing:

 

  • Little finger (pinkie): types the letters A, Q and Z.
  • Ring finger: types the letters S, W and X.
  • Middle finger: types the letters D, E and C.
  • Index finger: types the letters F,R,V,B,G, and T

Right hand – what letters your right fingers should be typing:

  • little finger (pinkie): types the following characters Semi-colon(:), P and Full stop (.) only.
  • Ring finger: types the characters L, O and comma (,).
  • Middle finger: types the letters K, I and M.
  • Index finger: types the letters J,U,M,N,H, and Y

 

Already you can see from looking at the keyboard that just learning these three-finger movements will help you cover nine letters in the alphabet and a good left-hand portion of the keyboard. Complete touch-typing will show you where all eight fingers go on the keyboard (the thumbs are only used to press the Space Bar) so that, when working together, your fingers can fly around the keyboard as you touch-type and build up your typing speed.

Our new typing tutor typewiz.com  is now available to any student that wants to learn how to touch type.

  • Typewiz is a new fun and interactive way to learn to touch type.
  • Typewiz is run through our Searsol centres monitored by our professional Searsol tutors (Ireland only).
  • Students get to select different avatars as they progress up the lessons.
  • Students can earn coins based on their performance on the course.
  • Coins can then be used in our games arcade where each coin spent allows the student to access one game.
  • Students can earn different word per minute badges (Bronze, Silver or Gold) as they become faster at typing.
  • Students can earn lesson badges as they progress up the lessons.
  • Realistic hands with a green finger which shows the user what keyboard button to press.
  • Graphs of all previous percentage scores with Words Per Minute (WPM) are available to access for the student at all times.
  • Typewiz is a self-paced course that allows students to work at their own pace in a classroom environment or at home.

If you are interested in trying out typewiz. Chat with us online or contact Searsol at info@searsol.com.

Typewiz.com – be a wiz at touch typing!

 

Should you teach your child how to touch type?

 

As every parent knows it is difficult to be a teacher and parent with your child. While a parents role is to nourish, encourage and motivate your child achievements. A teachers job is to instil a routine of learning that helps a student learn their subject in the easiest way based on the student’s abilities. Where the problem arises is when you become both the teacher and the parent.

The problem is that sometimes you be in your best attention try too hard to encourage your child to learn a subject, that you become the pushy parent and your child rebels and won’t listen to you. The end result is that your child doesn’t learn and it is up not learning the subject matter that you wanted them to learn. It really depends on your relationship with your child, your teaching abilities and the child focus on success and motivation to learn a subject.

To learn touch typing requires effort and dedication. A student would need to put in the least 20 hours of solid learning before they will be able to master the keyboard. Even then their speed would be quite slow but they would be aware of the keyboard buttons and be able to select them without looking at them.

As a parent, if you want your child to learn to touch type, the options are as follows:

  1. Hope that your school teaches touch typing as part of the computer curriculum. Most schools don’t so best check with your school on this.
  2. Learn how to touch type at home. This is a great idea but it really depends on your child and set about a dedicated time to achieve this. A child needs to be actively monitored and ensure that correct fingers are on the home keys.
  3. Send your child to a trained professional who has taught children how to touch type. This is really the ideal way to learn how to touch type. Your child is an environment with similar children of the age profile learning how to touch type.

Learning how to touch type does require patience, motivation and concentration but it can be learnt by anyone. We recommend the ideal start age is for a child to be the primary age group from eight onwards. If a child picks learns how to touch type before they enter secondary school then they have managed to master a major skill that will benefit them in the long run.

As Searsol, we offer the possibility to learn how to touch type online with our online typing tutor (www.typewiz.com).  More details are available on www.typewiz.com. We also offer dedicated typing centres in Ireland. To check out the location, click on https://searsol.com/find-centers/. We also run intense computer camps that teach touch typing over Easter and Summer, to check out our camps, click on the following link http://searsolcomputercamps.com

 

If your child has dysgraphia and poor handwriting speed, what can you do to help?

Child holding pen with dysgraphia

 

 

 

 

 

 

If your child has dysgraphia and poor handwriting speed, what can you do to help?

Poor handwriting speed can be a frustrating issue for children, especially if they are expected to keep up with their peers in the classroom. In today’s digital age, typing may be a helpful solution for children who struggle with handwriting.

 

According to Amundson (1995), the average typing speed of a child aged 10 is about 10 to 12 words per minute and when that child reaches an age of 14 their writing speed increases to around 16 words per minute. If your child has a learning difference such as dysgraphia their handwriting speed will be significantly slower. Their handwriting can be illegible and difficult to read. Dysgraphia is a nervous system problem that affects the fine motor skills needed to write. It makes it hard for a child to do handwriting homework or classwork. 

As a Parent you will be worried at your child’s slow handwriting speed so what can you do to improve it.  Try these tips to help improve your child’s handwriting skills and make lessons more productive and enjoyable for you and your child.

  • Use a research-based handwriting program. Your child’s teacher may recommend one that suits your child.  
  • Provide short bursts of handwriting exercise instead of long, drawn-out sessions. Many kids with dysgraphia need to work on fine motor skills. Activities such as colouring, cutting, painting, model-building, working with clay, working pencil mazes, and threading beads will increase dexterity and build fine motor skills.
  • Schedule handwriting practice time for 15 minutes a day.
  • If your child can’t remember how to form letters consistently, writing them correctly at times, but incorrectly at other times. This could be a sign that he has problems with your child’s working memory.
  • Work on correct letter formation by using multisensory methods and techniques that don’t require writing. Finger writing in the air, in the sand, in shaving cream, or on sandpaper are all great exercises that can encourage improvement in proper letter formation.

 

If your child’s handwriting speed doesn’t improve within six months using the techniques described above. Then it might be worth looking at introducing technology to assist your child with his / her writing skills. The best way would be to introduce your child to a computer and keyboard and learn how to touch type. Touch typing is being able to type without having to look at keys on the keyboard. 

One of the main benefits of typing is that it allows children to communicate their thoughts and ideas more quickly. When writing by hand, children may become slowed down by the physical act of writing, which can hinder their ability to express themselves fully. By typing, children can input their thoughts onto a screen at a faster pace, allowing them to better keep up with their own ideas and thoughts.

In addition to improving communication and expression, typing can also help children improve their spelling and grammar skills. When writing by hand, it can be difficult to catch and correct mistakes, but when typing, children have the ability to use spell check and other tools to ensure that their writing is error-free. This can help improve the overall quality of their writing and boost their confidence.

Another benefit of typing is that it allows children to easily save and organize their work. When writing by hand, children may struggle to keep track of their notes and assignments, leading to disorganization and frustration. By typing, children can easily save and access their work, making it easier to stay on top of their assignments and projects.

Overall, typing can be a valuable tool for children with poor handwriting speed. It allows them to communicate their thoughts and ideas more quickly, improve their spelling and grammar skills, and stay organized. Encouraging children to type, either through traditional keyboarding classes or through the use of assistive technology, can help them overcome their struggles with handwriting and succeed in the classroom.

 

If you are interested in getting your child to learn how to touch type at any of Searsol educational centres https://searsol.com/find-centers/