I read an article recently about typing classes in K-12 schools. It suggests students no longer need to take computer classes to improve their typing skills, citing innovations in auto-correct and auto-fill. Kids don’t need to actually know how to type, as long as they can get close to the real word, the machine will do the rest of the work. Plus, so many platforms use touch screens with swipe features. Who really needs to know that your left ring finger presses the “w”? Most people just stick to their pointer finger, pecking out sentences on miniature keyboards.
I grew up in the time of AOL Instant Messenger. Being a quick typer was a necessity. You didn’t want the other person to sit there waiting… ‘so and so is typing.’ What an annoying screen. So yes, I was a relatively fast typer.
Anyway, when I took the required computers class in seventh grade, I learned a lot. The typing programs taught proper posture and how to type efficiently and proficiently. Putting a box over your hands so you can’t see the keys?? Disabling the backspace bar?? Ingenious. So help me, every kid needs to race a canoe by typing faster.
Part of the argument was that typing is like cursive… not necessary. To which I cough and stutter… useless? How about learning how to sign your name? Heck, most of my writing is half print/half cursive. I was the kid that loved learning it. The one who, in the following years, laughed when classmates scoffed at being assigned papers written in cursive. I never understood why they were complaining. It’s not like it took any longer to write it that way. In fact, it was faster.
Back on topic, when I took the required computer class for high school, I was a senior–one of two. The rest of the underclassmen really sucked. I realize I had a couple years’ worth of typing on them, but honestly, they couldn’t type well at all. Were their typing classes in middle school already sacked? I mean, really, they had a lot of ground to cover.
The moral of the story is: computers aren’t going anywhere–typing shouldn’t either.
Midnight rush with a pen in my hand. Inkin’ Lincoln, sand-script with a fan. Remembering me before it began, sometimes I felt so def in the jam.