icRKphJXQm-ezth8lntKydifkDg The Loose Screw: Curriculum Review: Keyboard Town Pals

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Curriculum Review: Keyboard Town Pals

In today's world, it is essential that our children know how to use a computer, and proper keyboarding skills are important to be successful. As Chad is in 3rd grade now and we had not begun any formal keyboarding instruction, I was interested in trying Keyboard Town PALS. Keyboard Town PALS™ is a computer keyboard program that teaches elementary school children the letters and symbols on a Qwerty keyboard in an hour using proper technique. The lessons can be broken down into one hour, two 30 minute sessions, or eight stand-alone sessions.  Each lesson will take about 6-7 minutes. The suggested age range is 6-12. The lessons use puppets, music, and humor to catch the children's attention and teach them.  The price is $30 for either CD-Rom or Web-based.

Keyboard Town PALS™ uses the PALS system. PALS stands for PURPOSEFUL ASSOCIATIVE LEARNING SYSTEM. 'The PALS system works on the classic principle that two objects seen or heard together will often become linked in our minds. In addition to utilizing association and numerous memory techniques to improve retention, we incorporate different cues throughout the video to stimulate the visual, auditory, and kinesthetic senses.'

What did Chad and I think? Chad thought it was too babyish, but he did learn where all his fingers go, and so I think the program is great in that aspect.  He was very proud of himself each time he typed a word.  I think the concept is great as a tool to learn proper finger placement, but it is not a full typing program.  It was a great start for Chad to learn, however.  The price ($30) is too much for us with only one child that will use it, but if a family had several little ones I could see that it would be cost-effective.

I must admit I was bothered by something in Lesson 3.  One of the puppets (a wizard) says to the kids he is feeling sick, and turns around into his 'house' and starts making vomiting sounds and motions.  Now, some parents and kids may not think a thing of that, and may even think it is funny.  I was bothered by it, and didn't see the point in exposing my child to it.

In summary, the concept of this program (sans vomiting) is good for learning finger placement on the keyboard. It may be the perfect fit for some families.  It just wasn't for ours.  Click here for more information on how the Keyboard Town PALS program works.  Visit their website at http://www.keyboardtownpals.com/ for more information, testimonials, and other products available.

To read more reviews of this product, click here.

Disclaimer: I received this product free of charge in exchange for my honest review.


Ammy said...

Great review! We have four kids, and I still didn't find it a comprehensive program for $39.95. I awarded you the Versatile Blogger Award on my blog this week - go check it out! http://thequinnfamily6.blogspot.com Ammy

Lisa said...

Great review! We thought that the concept of this program was good but we did not like the way the kids were talked down to.