Keyboard Town Pals is an interactive keyboarding program that will "teach your child to type in one hour". We were given the web based version to review as our latest TOS Crew review.
About the program:
According to the makers of Keyboard Town Pals:
- We de-activated the delete and backspace function in the program since we do not dwell on mistakes.
- The program may be used in two- ½ hour lessons or smaller time-segments such as eight mini 6-7 minute lessons and is especially helpful to children with learning differences.
- Colors can sometimes have a soothing effect for students with certain disabilities. Therefore, Keyboard Town PALS offers a choice of fonts and background screen colors.
- Keyboard Town PALS is the "missing link" between the child's intellectual capabilities and the technological world around him or her. Understanding the keyboard liberates creative expression, offering every child a greater possibility of success in school and life.
Keyboard Town Pals uses a series of humorous characters to teach keyboarding. These characters talk the children through each lesson It divides the keyboard into three distinct areas: Uptown, Home Key Street, and Downtown (or the top, middle and bottom rows) You can view an online demo here.
The web version is available for $39.95, and there are other combinations you can purchase - the CD ROM, or CD ROM and additional products. It is available in English, Spanish and French. Check it all out on their website.
My six year old son tried the program. He easily completed it an hour as expected. He enjoyed the characters (he said his favorite character was Larry!). Since he has already been using some keyboarding programs, this teaching approach was different for him (dividing the keyboard into an upper, middle and lower row rather than teaching a specific finger and then the keys that finger is responsible for). I did like the fact that he always had proper finger placement and was engaged throughout the whole program. He was able to sit for an entire hour with it (you can break it into smaller chunks, but he just wanted to keep going).
He laughed throughout the instruction (the puppets and little skits are pretty cute), but did tell me afterwards he felt it was a little "baby-ish". It was frustrating to him that he could not use the delete and backspace buttons (which the makers of the program advertise as one of their best points). He didn't like NOT being able to correct his mistakes.
For the price of $39.95, I thought this was VERY steep. I expected many follow up exercises for this amount of money, but that was not offered.
If you think this might be something your child could benefit from, though,I definitely recommend checking out their website. They do say it is good for children with special needs, so if that applies to you, you might want to do further investigating. You can also read some other TOS Crew reviews here.
Disclaimer: I received the above named product from TOS Crew in return for my honest review. I have not been compensated in any other form.