Keyboarding Olympics


Looking for a way to add a little spice to your keyboarding classes?

Friendly competition and team spirit worked together during a 3 week unit that we just completed to raise the average words per minute(wpm) in keyboarding classes at our elementary school.

Our school uses Type to Learn by Sunburst for keyboarding instruction. To begin the unit, I collected data about the current lesson students were working on. This program allows you to set goals for student achievement. Ours are 10 wpm, with an accuracy of 80%. If you use a different program or methods, this idea might require more or less work, but should be possible.

Supplies I used

Stickers of Olympic medals

Sentence strips with class names such as Fifth Grade Wednesday

Multicultural cutouts of Japanese Children(large)

Next summer's olympics will be held in Athens, so the cutouts, would be different.

Decorative border strips with Olympic medals

Spreadsheet to calculate averages

Teacher prepared certificates

  1. When I was teaching at my old school, the computer lab is part of the "special classes" rotation. This means that each class comes to the lab one time per week.
  2. Each day, after all keyboarding classes for that day were completed, I gathered data about each student's progress. In this program, the student's lesson, wpm, and accuracy for that day's lesson are available. Although time consuming, this allowed students feedback on the following day and raised the level of friendly competition.
  3. After gathering the data, I entered wpm into a spreadsheet so that I could have the average wpm for that class, then ranked classes on that grade level at Gold, Silver, Bronze and no medal levels.
  4. The final determination of grade level winners was determined by getting the classes average wpm for the three week unit.
  5. All students will receive a certificate of participation for their work during the unit. Students who exceeded the class average 2 weeks out of 3 will receive a gold medal sticker on their certificate. Students who matched the class average or were slightly below will receive a silver sticker. Finally students who were below silver medal criteria will receive a bronze medal on theirs. These stickers will be awarded on individual effort against the effort of the group as a whole. I feel this is fair, as it will award recognition to those students with the most skill, but not exclude any student from receiving a sticker.
  6. Finally, I'm on the watch for items related to Sydney, for the next Olympics, but plan to repeat the unit next year calling it Olympic Training Camp. ;-)

Links to the REAL Olympics

Olympics Home

Athens Summer Olympics 2004

Link to Results of our Contest


This page was developed through GirlTECH '97a teacher training and student technology council program sponsored by the Center for Research on Parallel Computation (CRPC), a National Science Foundation-funded Science and Technology Center. Thanks also to theRGK Foundation for its generous support.

© Updated February 28, 2004 Jo Leland

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Mrs. Leland's Compass