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The Ink Spot Blog | What's the Perfect Age to Learn to Type?

What's the perfect age to Learn to Type?
perfect age to learn to type
Here's what we know.

Proper keyboarding requires the ability to comfortably use all 10 fingers. Mastery takes place with continued practice. Developmental specialists identify the earliest age a child’s hands are physically ready to begin keyboarding lessons to be age 8, or 3rd Grade. However, those youngsters aren’t doing a whole lot of typing on a day-to-day basis. Without regular practice beyond their lessons, the odds of sustained improvement aren’t in their favor.

What's wrong with two-finger typing?

We also know that the speed at which a typist transitions from keying letter-by-letter to keying words and phrases to be 25 words per minute (wpm). That means a student needs to type well past that threshold, at least 35-40 wpm, before they can mentally comprehend their own typed text! Two-finger typists (aka hunt-and-peck) at best can key up to 35 wpm but at least part of their brain is intently focused on individual letters and their location on the keyboard. Compare to those who have mastered proper fingering and technique who, on average, type between 60 – 90 wpm and are focused primarily on word strings and sentences. In fact, 120 wpm isn’t all that uncommon these days.

So, what's the magic age?

In our experience, and we’ve taught hundreds, we have found the ideal age to be when an individual (child or adult) starts feeling the pain of not knowing proper keyboarding. Motivation is key at any age! For a youngster, that’s around middle school age, grade 5-8. It’s not unusual for those kids to type 50 wpm at the end of their first month in our program. For adults who haven’t mastered proper keyboarding, the ideal time to begin might be when they are getting ready for college, assuming a new job responsibility, or just trying to stay-in-touch with distant relatives through email. Their goal is to reach a point where they feel comfortable with the keyboard.

At Digital Ink Web Creations, we’ve taught motivated students from age 8 to 88. From school age to college age. From medical doctors to CEO’s. Richard, an 88-year old who, after losing his wife, had a desperate need to stay-in-touch with family, had this to say at the end of our program, “Emails are so much easier to type now. Thank you!” While it might be too early to learn how to type, it’s never too late. Call us for more information about learning to type with us.

Renée Paquette, Director and Instructional Technologist at Digital Ink Web Creations