Read, Write & Type Review
Read, Write & Type from Talking Fingers Inc. takes a multi sensory approach in teaching children ages 6-9 how to type in conjunction with learning level appropriate phonics. Plus, it's just plain fun!
My six year old son was chosen to review this program through The Old Schoolhouse Review Crew. Logging onto the website, we were greeted by Rightway McKay and Lefty LaDee hands and the friendly antagonist, Vexor the Virus. The objective is to learn the placement of the keys on the keyboard and the phonetic sounds these letters make while keeping Vexor at bay through various exercises utilizing the letter sounds AND spelling actual words.
That is where this program differs from other typing programs we've used. The student is typing ACTUAL words and not nonsense. Using sight, sound, and touch to type, spelling and phonetic sounds really stick!! Also, instead of having the student keep their hands on the whole row of home keys, they are asked to 'power up' by keeping their middle fingers (referred to as the long fingers) on the 'D' and 'K' keys only instead of having to keep four fingers on the 'home key row'.
Each lesson covers 4 letters and their sounds. The first level starts out using 'F', 'A', 'T', 'C' and the space bar. The letters/sounds are introduced one by one and worked through before the next letter/sound is introduced. During the typing session for this lesson, the student is instructed to type "c", "ca", "cat", "a cat".
The second level utilizes 'J', 'H', 'I', 'S'. During this keyboard activity, the program types a person's name. An explanation about capitals is given - and a note made that this skill will be taught later.
After completing lesson 2, it's time to play the "Spaceship Challenge". This one really helps hone in and assess letter sounds (beginning, middle and end), reading comprehension using picture to words/sentence matching and spelling/typing practice by typing out names of the pictures. These lessons are accessed after completing each level of Read, Write and Type. After completing each of these levels, a percentage assessment is given to help parents keep track of how well their student is doing.
As you continue along in Read, Write and Type, more of the map is built and other areas can be accessed. For instance, the Email Tower where you can write stories and 'email' them to other parts of the world and receive stories from 'other parts' of the world.
The only draw back is if you are looking for a load and leave program, this isn't it. You need to at least keep periodic checks on your child, making sure their fingers are placed correctly. Also - you'll need to be handy to help with some of the spelling.
Final thought about Read, Write & Type from Talking Fingers
We love this program! My son has shown significant progress with reading and typing. This is a great enrichment tool and one that we will be utilizing in the future. Since you can choose from 1st, 2nd or 3rd grade words. The Read, Write and Type program GROWS with your child's ability!!!
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