How I Use It
I find it useful to go through the welcome message with the class as a whole - this way you can reinforce any key points, such as posture, position of fingers, how the site works etc. Set-up is pretty quick and easy and it is great to display the progress charts on the IWB - for encouragement and praise. Children are happy to continue at home, and the social elements elevate this above other sites that are just about the typing 'grind' - the children are motivated to do well - who doesn't want a gold medal? - and are rewarded for their efforts and can spend their coins to improve their avatar.
Great resource to have if you have the money to commit to such a resource. There is not a lot of time in the school day to devote to keyboarding skills, but it is worth trying to squeeze it in where you can. It is a very useful tool to highlight perseverance - 8 tries for a bronze medal has as good a feeling for the recipient as does 8 levels with a gold first time every time. Good to reinforce correct typing position and can be used in registration time, as part of a computing session or as part of an after-school club. Children love to play it and don't realise they are learning - superb product!