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Pros: A huge number of digestible lessons combined with inventive gameplay, an intuitive skills progression, and useful statistics.
Cons: Without supervision, students could cheat on lessons by looking at the keyboard. Free version has targeted ads.
Bottom Line: This superb tool has great guided lessons, engaging assessments, and real-time feedback.
Quite simply, you can use TypingClub to help students of all ages learn to type more quickly and accurately. TypingClub's teacher dashboard allows for well-managed, whole-class typing instruction and practice. You can begin by creating classes and assigning lesson plans for each class. Alternatively, give placement tests to students and assign specific lessons accordingly. You can customize lessons to disable the Backspace key, the guiding hands, or instant feedback, and you can set the requirements for passing a level and allow or prevent students from jumping ahead to later lessons. It's easy to try out lessons right from the dashboard, and to create custom courses, lessons, and tests. Entire districts can also manage typing classes for students, and there are extensive tutorial webpages and videos to help you get started. There are detailed handbooks and resources for Jungle Junior, Typing Jungle, DC Typing, and Vocabulary & Spelling, along with tutorials and other help.
Students can easily log in and play anywhere they have internet access, so typing practice can be assigned as homework. Most likely, students will find TypingClub to be most engaging when they have the freedom to play, experiment, and let the site do what it does best: meet them at their personal learning level with rich, detailed, ongoing feedback. Ultimately, students' success will depend on their ability to resist any urges to look at the keyboard. Teachers may want to monitor students as they start, with periodic check-ins. Or they can allow for practice at home with testing done in class. Also note that the free version includes ads.
TypingClub is one product under the EdClub umbrella. It's a masterfully designed typing and keyboarding curriculum with lessons and incentives that help kids learn to touch-type, shining bright in the crowded field of typing programs. It guides students through brief, easily digestible keyboarding lessons with a set of corresponding speed and accuracy assessments for each. Lessons range from the home row to lengthy, topical paragraphs. In between these lessons are fun videos that focus on skills (and the letters themselves, for younger students), finger gym exercises, and review. A guide at the bottom shows students where the keys are, and students get instant feedback while typing, including badges for reaching certain milestones. Advanced students can skip past easier lessons to practice just the areas they need to focus on. Students can examine their own typing data through words per minute (WPM), accuracy percentage, and activity over time, as well as a heat map and data about which keys and fingers they struggle with. Teachers can monitor all student activity, and their live feed tells them what students are doing and how well they did. Lessons can also be played back to study performance. In the teacher dashboard, you can add and delete classes and students, assign lessons, print login cards, design your own lesson plans, run reports, and study in-depth student data.
Because of TypingClub's expansive lesson offerings, students from pre-K all the way up through high school can use it. The youngest kids begin with Jungle Junior, whose 250 cute and playful lessons introduce letters on the keyboard in alphabetical order, mirroring how they learn the alphabet in other subjects, and then slowly working up to typing sentences. Older kids can jump right into Typing Jungle, with almost 700 lessons that present the keyboard in a more traditional manner, beginning with the home row and including lessons that help students increase their speed and stamina. Common letter patterns, tricky words, and interesting content are included. Both Jungle Junior and Typing Jungle include plenty of finger gym exercises to warm up typing muscles. In addition, several Animated Story Lesson Plans are available; these allow students to animate a story, causing it to unfold as they type. The original 100-lesson TypingClub lesson plan is also still available. EdClub also offers Vocabulary & Spelling lessons (grades 3–8), one-handed typing with either the left or the right hand, alternate keyboards such as Dvorak, a lesson on Digital Citizenship, and lessons in multiple foreign languages.
TypingClub's game structure, real-time and dashboard feedback, animated stories, and badge rewards make it more engaging than similar sites, and its customization options give teachers flexibility for meeting the needs of students at all levels and with different support needs. The lessons are geared toward learning new skills one at a time and then combining that knowledge and building on it to create mastery. Students get typing speed and accuracy feedback as they type. After each lesson, students get a speed and accuracy score compared with the benchmarks they're trying to hit, the duration, a star score, and a number score. Students work toward badges, five-star scores, and higher game scores. To make themselves feel more at home, they can change the keyboard layout, the keyboard and hand guide appearance, font size and typeface, and theme, including some dark mode options.
Plenty of data about students' performance is accessible to both teachers and students. Younger students will like the general feedback in the form of a gold-star rating (on a five-star scale). More advanced students will appreciate TypingClub's specific feedback with speed and accuracy, strong and problem keys and fingers, practice time, instant feedback while they type, and instant replays of their typing lessons. This kind of ownership can really empower older students who are beginning to take a more active role in their education.
If there's one potential improvement, it's this: Although Jungle Junior lessons are great for the youngest students, they then jump right into the full Typing Jungle curriculum without a transition. But that's nitpicking, because TypingClub's thoughtful design and pedagogical choices make it a true standout.