Typing Coach Review

Typing is an important skill in today’s world, so I want my children to have strong typing skills. I was grateful for the opportunity to review a new-to-me typing program, The Typing Coach Online Typing Course created by The Typing Coach.

The Typing Coach Online Typing Course reminds me a bit of my high school typing class.  I learned to type by looking at the instructional book, not a screen, and this program follows that format.  The main difference between my class and Hannah’s experience with this program is that I learned on a typewriter and Hannah is learning on a laptop computer.

The Typing Coach Online Typing Course is a mastery program.  Students remain on the same lesson until they have completely mastered a typing lesson, no matter how long it takes.  I completely agree with needing to develop the muscle memory to be a truly proficient typist, but some personalities will find this approach difficult and frustrating.  Hannah is a bit of a perfectionist (wonder where she gets that from, hmm…) so not being able to move to the next lesson due to a single mistake was hard. This is providing an opportunity to manage frustration while working towards a goal.

The Typing Coach is a great typing for homeschoolers course.

Setting up The Typing Coach

You will have access to the typing course soon after you sign up for the program.  There is a small bit of prep work to do before your children are ready to type.  First, print out the student packet (easily found on the website).  I hole punched the papers and organized them in a binder. That made it easy for Hannah to find exactly the page she needed for a lesson. Every lesson is included in this packet so it is helpful to keep it organized.  Next, print out the learning check packet.  The learning check packet contains the typing tests that are used to ensure mastery.  I don’t want Hannah to get a sneak peek at test material, so I store the learning check packet separately.

You will need some way to cover the computer screen.  If your student is using a desk top computer, you can simply turn off the screen.  Hannah used a laptop, so we just covered the screen with a kitchen towel.

How We Use The Typing Coach

The Typing Coach is a great typing for homeschoolers course.

 

Hannah has mastered cursive penmanship so now she is spending her ‘handwriting’ time learning to type properly.  She practices four times a week.  She is working diligently towards mastering each lesson, but usually starts to get frustrated after 20 minutes or so.  At that point, she stops for the day.  Once she is thoroughly frustrated, she makes more mistakes so we don’t push her beyond that point.

When she sits down at the computer to type, Hannah pulls up the lesson she is currently working on and opens a blank Google document.  She plugs in her headphones and presses play on the audio file.  Now she covers the computer screen with a kitchen towel so she has to rely on the book, not the screen, to type. The typing coach verbally guides her through the lesson, providing stretching breaks and encouragement periodically.

The Typing Coach is a great typing for homeschoolers course.

The Typing Coach Online Typing Course is not necessarily a fun or flashy program.  It will get results though, so the dryness can be overlooked.  I do think this course is best suited for high school students.  Hannah is 11, a bit younger than the recommended age so she is progressing through a bit slower and may need a refresher course in the future in order to keep up her skills.  The website does provide suggestions on adapting the program for younger students.

I am glad Hannah is learning the correct way to type before she develops bad habits.

You can find The Typing Coach here:

The Typing Coach Online Typing Course {The Typing Coach Reviews}
 

Crew Disclaimer

How to Host a Simple Tea with Poetry

This post contains affiliate links

Our curriculum plan includes a ton of reading.  It is a balanced mix of fiction, nonfiction, and biographies.  We read novels and biographies that complement our history curriculum.  We sprinkle in interesting books about science themes.  And of course we read plenty of novels for language arts.  It can be challenging to fit in enough poetry though.

Reading (and writing) poetry provides a freedom that isn’t often found in other genres. Children are naturally drawn to poetry due to the rhythmic tone.  They also like the lack of typical grammar rules and structure.  Poems can be long or short, serious or silly, grammatically correct or riddled with grammatical liberties. Poetry can feel like a breath of fresh air.

Even though I believe in the benefits of regularly reading poetry, it can be difficult to work it into my lessons without being intentional.

This is easily remedied by hosting a weekly tea with poetry.

Combining tea with poetry is one of my favorite parts of the Brave Writer lifestyle.  It is a simple idea that really packs an educational punch.

I love hosting ‘formal’ tea with poetry.  We set the table with a table-cloth, my wedding china, decorations such as a centerpiece and candles, and a variety of home-baked treats.  It is a wonderful way to make tea with poetry special.

Sometimes though, life gets in the way and there just isn’t time to spend an hour or more getting ready for tea and poetry.  What do we do then? Just skip it until we have more time?

Nope.  We just opt for a simple tea with poetry.

Simple Tea with Poetry

A simple tea with poetry strips away all of the nonessential elements.  It makes you focus on the goal – creating positive memories/feelings while enjoying poetry.

All you need for a simple tea with poetry is some sort of treat and a few poetry books.  I never skip the treats.  My rambunctious son is more willing to sit still and listen to poetry if he is also snacking.  I’ve said before that Hannah and Ben seem to learn through their stomach, and tea with poetry is no exception.  I fill their minds and bellies at the same time.

Hosting a simple tea with poetry is easy with these tips.

Poetry Treats

While I do enjoy baking, sometimes it just doesn’t happen.  When I run short on time, I swing by my grocery store or favorite bakery to pick up a special treat.  I let my kids choose.  Hannah and Ben practice their negotiation skills as they try to convince the other to agree with their treat selection.

Super simple poetry treats include:

  • Anything from the grocery store (or local bakery if you are feeling fancy) bakery department or cookie aisle
  • Sliced fresh fruit – many produce sections sell it already sliced for a higher price.  This might be worth it if you are really short on time.
  • Microwave s’mores – just pop the marshmallow on a graham cracker square and microwave it for a few seconds before you add the chocolate.
  • Doughnuts
  • Pb and J sandwiches, cut with fun cookie cutters
  • Cheese and crackers

No fancy serving utensils required!  Feel free to leave the baked goods in their original packaging.  Use paper plates and utensils if you are really short on time.

Even though it is technically called tea with poetry, you are not limited to just tea.  Expand your drink options to whatever your family likes to drink.  We typically stick to hot herbal tea in the cold rainy months, but when the sun finally peaks out, we switch to:

  • Iced tea
  • Lemonade
  • Flavored water
  • Sparkling grape juice – if we are feeling extra fancy or celebratory

Hosting a simple tea with poetry is super easy with these tips.

Poetry Books

Libraries are full of wonderful poetry books, but in order to throw a simple tea with poetry on short notice, it is helpful to have a few poetry compilations on your home bookshelf.

Keep the poetry books in a specific spot on your bookshelf so you can quickly find them.  It does no good to save a few hours on preparing treats if you spend that time hunting down lost books.

Here is what is currently on my poetry shelf:

What poetry compilations do you love?  I am always looking for new books to add to our collection!

Organized Homeschooler is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com