Computer Skills Curriculum
Keyboarding Lesson Plan

Title: Key Vocabulary Words!

Other North Carolina competency goals that can be addressed by this Lesson Plan
English Language Arts: 1.1, 1.2, 1.3; Computer Skills: 2.2

Grade: 3
Competency 2.2: Demonstrate proper keyboarding techniques for keying all letters.

Measure 2.2.2: Given keyboarding software or a keyboarding device, use home row keyboarding techniques to type appropriate vocabulary words.

Materials Needed: Computer or typewriter keyboard or keyboarding device such as Type-Right, keyboarding software such as MicroType, The Wonderful World of PAWS, large wall poster of keyboard with highlighted home row keys, elementary keyboarding textbook such as COMPUTER KEYBOARDING: An Elementary Course, large posters showing correct keyboarding posture and correct keyboarding finger placement.

Time: Ten to fifteen minutes, repeated as necessary.

Terms: Keyboard, Software, RETURN/ENTER key, Space bar, Strike, Home row keys



Pre-Activities: Teacher Preparation
  • 1. If computers and computer software are used, prepare equipment and load software.

  • 2. Place on the classroom wall large posters showing proper posture and proper keyboarding technique.

  • 3. Obtain appropriate vocabulary words.


  • 1. Review correct keyboarding posture by referring to the wall poster, by demonstrating the correct posture, and by instructing students to pantomime correct posture.

  • 2. Referring to fingers as "right hand--first finger (index finger), second finger, third finger, fourth finger and thumb, review correct finger placement for the home row keys by calling students' attention to the wall poster, and by demonstrating the correct finger placement. Have students pantomime correct finger placement. (The Type-Right names fingers "fore finger, middle, third, and little finger.")

  • 3. Introduce keys needed for the selected vocabulary words by instructing students to: (1) locate the new key on the keyboarding chart, (2) locate the new key on the keyboard, (3) learn which finger strikes the new key, (4) watch the teacher as the new key is demonstrated, (5) with fingers in correct home row position, watch the finger as it reaches to the new key and back to home row position several times, (6) watch the finger as it strikes the new key and returns to home row position several times (students should be instructed to strike keys with quick, sharp strokes--as if the keys were hot!), and (7) watch the screen or paper as the finger strikes the new key and returns to home row position several times. (The "open screen" option should be selected if keyboarding software is being used.)

  • 4. Instruct students to strike each key, with eyes on screen or paper, as it is called aloud several times, returning to home row after each strike. The teacher's voice should be loud and sharp (cutting words offf quickly) as students are instructed to strike each key as quickly as possible after the key is called.

  • 5. Call aloud the same keys and instruct students to press the space bar (with right thumb) after each key, such as "d, space, d, space, d, space . . ." with students striking keys immediately after each key is called.

  • 6. As new keys are learned, call aloud appropriate vocabulary words for which students know all the key locations and have students rekey them several times each for spelling comprehension. Have students to help think of some of the words used for the drill.


  • 1. Instruct students to simultaneously strike a key as they say the key aloud.

  • 2. With home row keys, call aloud combinations using the same finger on both hands, such as: "f, j, f, space" (with first fingers); "s, l, s, space" (with third fingers); etc. If students are told ahead of time what the combinations will be, these can be keyed simultaneously with the teacher's voice.

  • 3. With keys other than home keys, call aloud combinations using the new key along with the corresponding home key, such as: "d, e, d, space;" "k, i, k, space;" etc. These can be keyed simultaneously with teacher's voice.

  • 4. Call aloud combinations which spell simple words, such as (when teaching the "w"); "w, o, w, space; w, o, w, space . . ." ("Wow! This is fun!").

  • 5. To build speed, have students to think of two-letter words which they know. Call aloud these words having students key the same words over and over, placing spaces between words, and continuing until a different word is called.

  • 6. Have students decorate a bulletin board with the students' names that they can key correctly (adding names as new keys are learned).


Students should demonstrate correct keyboarding techniques for touch typing to key in appropriate vocabulary words.


Constantly monitor students to remind them of correct technique, such as maintaining correct posture; using quick, sharp strokes; using correct fingering; and keeping eyes on screen or paper.