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Talking Typer™ (for iOS devices)

Copyright 2016-2017
American Printing House for the Blind, Inc.

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About Talking Typer (for iOS devices)

Talking Typer for iOS® devices is an accessible typing and computer keyboard training app and is designed for use by an individual or by multiple students in a training environment. It comes with several editable lessons, and offers lots of options for teachers and parents, including editing existing lessons, creating new lessons, forming student groups, and so on. It also includes the fun, fast-paced game Hurry Scurry.

The app includes 35 default lessons that are grouped into two degrees of difficulty: Beginner and Advanced.

The only requirement for the Talking Typer app is an Apple® device running version iOS 8 or higher.

The Talking Typer app for iOS is one of three versions of Talking Typer that will be available through the American Printing House for the Blind (APH) in 2016/2017.

Download the App

Go to Apple's App Store® online store through the icon on your device or from iTunes® online store. Search for Talking Typer or browse in the Education and Games categories. Select the app and click download. You are prompted to enter your iTunes password. Once the app is downloaded, it is ready for immediate use.

Connect a Keyboard

Talking Typer works with the onscreen keyboard of your Apple device, but is intended primarily for use with an external keyboard. For help with connecting an external keyboard, consult the keyboard maker’s user guide for instructions.

Using VoiceOver

You may opt to use VoiceOver with the Talking Typer app for iOS. If so, please be aware of the following conditions:

For information about VoiceOver commands for keyboards and refreshable braille displays, check out this website: Quick reference guide for voiceover on iOS.

Using Echo Keys

You may opt to use the Echo Keys feature in Talking Typer for iOS. Echo keys repeat the keystrokes, letter for letter. Echo Keys does interfere with VoiceOver, so make sure VoiceOver is turned Off before turning Echo Keys On.

The default setting for Echo Keys is Off. To turn the setting on, you must go to the App Preferences screen. To access the App Preferences, tap the Admin button on the Home screen, then tap the App Preferences button on the Administrator screen.

Note: Students may need assistance getting this setting turned On, because of the password security.

How to Navigate Within the App

When you open the app for the first time, it opens to the Home screen. From the Home screen you can go to any page in the app. The Home screen is where most of the tasks begin. It includes buttons that comprise the major sections of the app.

screenshot of home screen with 5 buttons

You can move forward (or drill down) to the screen of your choice by selecting a button on the screen or the plus symbol (+) right-top corner of the screen. The back button (

Logins and Passwords

Creating a Login is not a requirement to begin using the app. Students and administrators may begin using the app immediately.

While Talking Typer does not require an administrator password to perform any of the functions within the app, the advantage to setting a password through the creation of a login is the additional security protocol. Passwords can be changed in the Settings. See Setting Admin Preferences to learn more.

Admin logins – associate student accounts created by that Admin to the login information. If multiple Administrators use the same device, the login allows access only to the students created by that individual administrator. Administrators can also create students (new accounts) through the login. See Create a Student Account for more information.

Student logins – allow access only to the individual student's information. Students are not able to access the information of another student through the use of logins. When a student logs in, the student's dashboard is available. Lessons assigned to the student can be viewed from the student's dashboard. See Login to a Student Account for more information.

Independent learner logins – offer the ability to monitor personal progress through the lessons. Independent learners are administrators of their own account.

login screen with name and password entry fields and blue Submit button

Passwords are required for certain functions by default. These include access to the Admin Settings and editing or deleting lessons, students, or groups. To disable the password requirement, the Admin can remove it in the Settings menu.

  1. Tap the Admin button on the Home screen.
  2. Tap the App Preferences button on the Administrator screen.
  3. Select Teacher Name and Password.
  4. Tap the Remove Password button.

screenshot of password screen with entry fields and blue Submit and red Remove Password buttons

Administrators and Independent Learners

About Administrators

Administrators are the managers of the app. A manager might be a teacher, a parent, or an independent learner. The Administrator performs most of the managerial tasks.

Admin tasks include:

Create an Admin/Independent Learner Account

It is not necessary to create an account to start using Talking Typer right away. However, creating an account allows multiple administrators/independent learners to use the same app without being able to access other user's information. Passwords are optional, but setting the password keeps your information, and the information of the students tied to your account, private and inaccessible.

An administrator must create an Admin account in order to set up student accounts and groups that are tied to that account. An independent learner must create an account in order to follow their individual progress.

  1. Select the word "Login" at the top-left corner of the Home screen.
  2. In the pop-up window, select the words "Switch to Create New Account." If using VoiceOver, you hear Create Account.
    screenshot of login screen with the words Switch to Create New Account circled in red
  3. Type the user name in the Name field.
  4. Type the password in the Password field. (optional)
  5. Select the blue Submit button when finished.

Setting Admin Preferences

There are several default settings for Talking Typer. To meet your the needs and those of your students, you can change the default settings in the Settings screen.

To access the App Preferences, tap the Admin button on the Home screen, then tap the App Preferences button on the Administrator screen.

screenshot of Administrator screen with 3 buttons

In Settings screen you can make or set changes for the several items.

screenshot of Settings screen

After reviewing/changing the settings, tap Done in the upper-right corner to save the settings and return to the Administrator screen.

Preferences Options

The Settings screen contains general default settings with different controller mechanisms.

Preferences Table

Setting Controller Result/Action to take Default Setting
Teacher Name and Password > Pop-up window with text entry field to enter new password or delete password N/A
Echo Correct Keys On/Off button Off (white button is on the left and clear on right)
On (white button is on the right and yellow on the left)
Off
Speech > Opens page with Rate slide bar, Pitch slide bar, Change Voice picker, Test Speech button, and Restore Defaults button Rate: 0.5; Pitch 1.0; Voice: Samantha (Enhanced)
Lesson Text Size > Slide bar iPad: 42; iPhone/iPod Touch: 32

Suggested Sequence of Tasks

This sequence of tasks is intended for first-time use or until you are familiar with the app. It is not the only method to operate or navigate the app and is intended to act merely as a guide or suggestion. It is not imperative that you follow this sequence.

Many of the tasks for first-time use are optional. You may elect to use default settings or change them at a later time.

  1. Download the app from the App Store
  2. Connect an external keyboard
  3. Set an Administrator password
  4. Set or change default preferences if necessary
  5. Add student(s)
  6. Create groups
  7. Assign students to a group
  8. Create lessons
  9. Assign lessons

About Independent Learners

Independent Learners are students who can manage their own accounts and are learning to type on their own, outside of a classroom setting. Independent Learners have the same level of access as Administrators and can do the same tasks as both Administrators and Students.

Student Accounts

Student accounts are for individuals using the app to learn to type. A student may also be an administrator of the app.

As the administrator of the Talking Typer app, you can create student accounts and then edit or delete them as necessary. Student accounts help you keep track of an individual’s level of improvement, which in turn, assists you in the management of assigning appropriate lessons.

Create a Student Account

Creating student accounts allows you to monitor the improvement in speed and accuracy of individual students. It also allows the student to monitor their improvement independently.

There are two ways to create a student account: through the Admin screen or through the Login.

Create a student account through the Admin screen:

  1. Tap the Admin button on the Home screen.
  2. On the Administrator screen, tap the Students button.
  3. On the Students screen, tap the plus (+) sign in the upper-right corner of the screen.
    screenshot of Students screen
  4. On the Edit Student screen, enter the student’s name in the Name field.
    screenshot of Edit Student screen
  5. Enter a password in the Password field or leave it blank.
    Note: It is not necessary to enter a password for each (or any) student to create a student account. If you have a lot of students and want to ensure they are logged into the proper account, you may require that they use a password. If it is too difficult for students to remember the password or you do not wish to maintain a list, you may elect to have students log in without a password.
  6. Tap the word “Save” in the upper-right corner.
  7. To add another student, repeat the process starting from the Students screen.

Create a student account through the Login:

  1. Tap the word "Login" in the upper-left corner of the Home screen.
    screenshot of Home screen with Login circled in red
  2. Tap the words "Switch to Create New Account" above the Name entry field.
    screenshot of Login screen with Switch to Create New Account circled in red
  3. Type the user name in the Name field.
  4. Type the password in the Password field. (optional)
  5. Select the blue Submit button when finished.

Optional steps: You may elect to add the student to a group or assign lessons at this time. See Assign to Group or Assign Lessons for more information.

Edit a Student Account

Occasionally, you may need to edit a student account for any number of reasons. This task is accomplished from the Edit Student screen.

Because each student is different, you may want to set different targets for them. These targets can be adjusted through the Students page of the app.

For example, student "Suzie" may have a high accuracy rate, but her speed is a little slow. You can change the default settings to set a lower target rate of speed and increase the accuracy rate, to adjust to Suzie’s individualized needs.

Note: Edits are made by typing in the text field below the item to be edited or choosing a selection from a picker or list.

  1. Tap the Admin button on the Home screen.
  2. On the Administrator screen, tap the Students button.
  3. Select the student account you wish to edit by tapping the name on the Students screen.
  4. On the Edit Student screen, make the necessary changes to the following options:

screenshot of the Edit Students screen

Delete a Student Account

To keep from developing a long/outdated list of students, it is good practice to delete student accounts for students who are no longer taking the course. This can be done from the Edit Student screen of the app.

  1. Tap the Admin button on the Home screen.
  2. On the Administrator screen, tap the Students button.
  3. Select the student account you wish to delete by tapping the name on the Students screen.
  4. Select the trashcan icon in the upper-right corner of the Edit Student screen.
    screenshot of Edit Students screen with trashcan icon circled in red
    A pop-up window appears with the following message:
    Remove “student name”? Are you sure you want to remove this student? All of this student’s data will be erased. This cannot be undone!
    screenshot of Remove Student popup window
    The warning message is a fail-safe for unintended deleting of student accounts. Make sure you read the message to determine if you want to continue with the action.
  5. Select Remove or Cancel.

Edit Student Page Options

The Edit Student page contains general default settings with different controller mechanisms.

Edit Student Table

Setting Controller Result/Action to take Default Setting
Name Edit field Pop-up keyboard to type entry Blank
Password Edit field Pop-up keyboard to type entry Blank
View Results > Opens pop-up window with a history student’s lesson results by date (current at the top) N/A
Assign to group > Opens pop-up window with a picker list to select from N/A
Assign Lessons > Opens pop-up window with list of lessons to select (or deselect) N/A

Review Student Progress

Student lesson scores are stored in the Talking Typer app by date with the most current lesson taken at the top of the list. A history of scores allows administrators to review, follow, and access student progress, thus making lesson assignment easier.

  1. Tap the Admin button on the Home screen.
  2. Tap the Students button on the Adminstrator screen.
  3. Select the Student you wish to review on the Students screen.
  4. Tap the words "View Results" on the Edit Student screen.
    A Lesson Results pop-up window opens with a history of the lessons attempted by date, starting with the most current.
    screenshot of the Lesson Results with words per minute, time, accuracy, and errors
  5. Tap Done.
  6. Tap the word "Cancel" in the upper-left corner to exit the Edit Student screen and return to the Students screen.

Group Accounts

Creating, editing, and deleting groups is very similar to the same processes for individual students. Groups must be named, provided a password (optional), and allotted certain settings, just like students.

Administrators of the Talking Typer app can create student groups and then edit or delete them as necessary. Assigning students to groups makes it easy for teachers to assign lessons to several students at once.

Create a Group

Assigning students to groups saves time and helps with organization. It makes it easy for teachers to assign lessons to several students at once. By default, all new students are assigned to the default group.

  1. Tap the Admin button on the Home screen.
  2. On the Administrator screen, tap the Groups button.
    screenshot of the Administrator screen with Groups circled in red
  3. On the Groups screen, tap the plus (+) sign in the upper-right corner of the screen.
    screenshot of the Groups screen with the plus sign circled in red
  4. On the Add Group pop-up, enter the group’s name in the text field.
    screenshot of the Add Group popup
  5. Select Save. The group appears in the Groups list.
  6. To add another group, repeat the process starting from the Groups screen.

Assign to a Group

By default, all new students are assigned to the Default group. Students can be added to a group from the Edit Group screen or the Edit Student screen.

Add a student to a group through the Edit Group screen:

  1. Tap "Select Students"
  2. Select the students from the list by tapping the name of the student.
  3. Tap Edit Group to return to the Edit Group screen.
    The selected students are now listed under the Students section of the group.

screenshot of Select Group for Student popup

Add a student to a group through the Edit Student screen:

  1. Select the student from the Students screen.
  2. Tap "Assign to Group"
  3. Select the group from the picker list.
  4. Tap Done when finished.

screenshot of Select Students for Group popup

Edit a Group

There are three ways to edit a group: rename, assign lessons, or assign students. All are accomplished from the Edit Group screen.

Edit a group name:

  1. Tap the Admin button on the Home screen.
  2. On the Administrator screen, tap the Groups button.
  3. Select the group you wish to edit by tapping the name on the Groups screen.
  4. Tap the pencil icon to the right of the group name.
    screenshot of Edit Group screen with the pencil icon circled in red
  5. Type the change in the edit field.
  6. Tap Save.

Assign lessons to a group:

  1. Follow steps 1-3 from edit a group name.
  2. Tap "Assign Lessons"
  3. Select the lesson(s) to be assigned from the list.
  4. Tap the back arrow (You are returned to the Edit Group screen.

Assign students to a group:

  1. Follow steps 1-3 from edit a group name.
  2. Tap "Select Students"
  3. Select the students from the list by tapping the name of the student.
  4. Tap Edit Group to return to the Edit Group screen.
    The selected students are now listed under the Students section of the group.

Delete a Group

To keep from developing a long and/or outdated list of groups, it is good practice to delete group accounts when students who are no longer taking the class. This can be done from the Edit Group screen of the app.

  1. Tap the Admin button on the Home screen.
  2. On the Administrator screen, tap the Groups button.
  3. Select the group account you wish to delete by tapping the name on the Groups screen.
  4. Select the trashcan icon in the upper-right corner of the Edit Group screen.
    A pop-up window appears with the following message:
    Remove Group? Are you sure you want to delete this group? Students assigned to this group will be assigned to the Default group.
    screenshot of Remove Group popup
    The warning message is a fail-safe for unintended deleting of group accounts. Make sure you read the message to determine if you want to continue with the action.
  5. Select Remove or Cancel.

Custom and Default Lessons

There are two types of lessons: Custom and Default. Default lessons are the lessons included with the app when you download it. Custom lessons are lessons you create. Administrators can assign any number of lessons to individual students or groups. Default Lessons can be duplicated and then edited to better suit the needs of the student and/or a new lesson can be created.

Talking Typer gives teachers and parents the ability to tailor the learning program to meet the needs of the student by incorporating the options to assign, create, and edit lessons.

Default Lessons

Talking Typer includes 35 default lessons at two degrees of difficulty: 14 Beginner and 21 Advanced.

Default Lessons Table

Default Lesson Name Degree of Difficulty
Home keys for the left hand (a,s,d,f) Beginner
Home keys for right hand (j,k,l,;) Beginner
New keys are g and h Beginner
Capitals and the Period Key (.) Beginner
The Caps Lock Key Beginner
New keys are t and u Beginner
New keys are e and i Beginner
New keys are e and n Beginner
New keys are v and o Beginner
New keys are c and y Beginner
New keys are w and m Beginner
New keys are b and p Beginner
New keys are x and q Beginner
New keys are z and comma (,) Beginner
New keys are quotation mark (“) and apostrophe (‘) Advanced
Number keys Advanced
New keys are forward slash (/) and question mark (?) Advanced
The brackets [ ] and braces { } Advanced
Phrases Advanced
More Phrases Advanced
Sentences Advanced
More Sentences Advanced
Special Punctuation – acute, grave, or back quote (`) and tilde (~) Advanced
Special Punctuation – exclamation point or bang (!) and ampersat or at (@) Advanced
Special Punctuation – number, pound, or hash (#) and dollar sign ($) Advanced
Special Punctuation – percent (%) and caret or circumflex (^) Advanced
Special Punctuation – ampersand or and (&) and asterisk or star (*) Advanced
Special Punctuation – left parenthesis and right parenthesis Advanced
Special Punctuation – hyphen, dash, or minus (-) and underscore (_) Advanced
Special Punctuation – equal (=) and plus (+) Advanced
Special Punctuation – backslash (\) and vertical bar or pipe (|) Advanced
Special Punctuation – less than () Advanced
Numeric Keypad – 4,5,6 – 1,2,3 – 7,8,9 Advanced
Numeric Keypad – 0 and decimal or period (.) Advanced
Numeric Keypad – divide (/), multiply (*), and minus (-) Advanced

Assign a Lesson

There are two types of lessons in Talking Typer: Default Lessons and Custom Lessons. The Talking Typer app comes with 35 Default Lessons. The Assign Lessons option can be found on the Edit Student screen or the Edit Group screen.

Assign a lesson(s) to a student:

  1. Tap the Admin button on the Home screen.
  2. On the Administrator screen, tap the Students button.
  3. Select the student account by tapping the name on the Students screen.
  4. Tap "Assign Lessons"
  5. Select the lesson(s).
  6. Tap Done.

screenshot of Assign Lessons to Student popup with list of lessons

Assign a lesson(s) to a group:

  1. Tap the Admin button on the Home screen.
  2. On the Administrator screen, tap the Groups button.
  3. Select the Group name on the Groups screen.
  4. Tap "Assign Lessons"
  5. Select the lesson(s) to be assigned from the list.
  6. Tap the back arrow (You are returned to the Edit Group screen.

screenshot of Assign Lessons to Group screen with list of lessons

Create a Custom Lesson

One of the most useful features of Talking Typer is the ability to create custom, targeted lessons for individuals or groups, enabling students to focus on areas that need additional practice. Lesson creation can also make for a more personal experience for both teacher/parent and student.

  1. On the Home screen, tap the Lessons and Drills button.
  2. On the Learning Modes screen, tap the Custom Lessons button.
    screenshot of Learning Modes screen with Custom Lessons circled in red
    The Custom Lessons screen is displayed with a list of any previously created lessons. As you create/add lessons, the new lessons are added to this list. # On the Custom Lessons screen, tap the plus (+) sign in the upper-right corner of the screen.
    screenshot of Custom Lessons screen with the plus sign circled in red
  3. On the Edit Lesson screen, enter or adjust the following information:
  4. Add the drills by tapping the words "Add Drills" in the bottom-left corner.
    The Edit Drill pop-up window opens.
    1. Enter the text of the drill in the blank entry field.
    2. Select Letter, Word, or Phrase from the picker list.
    3. Tap Save in the upper-right corner.
      screenshot of the Edit Drill pop-up
  5. On the Edit Lesson screen, tap "Save" again (upper-right corner).
    The new lesson appears at the bottom of the list on the Custom Lessons screen.

Duplicate a Lesson

Duplicating lessons makes it easy to create new lessons without having to start from scratch. In this way, you can duplicate a lesson that is similar to what you want to create, then edit and rename the duplicated lesson.

  1. Tap the Lessons and Drills button on the Home screen.
  2. Tap the Custom Lessons button on the Learning Modes screen.
    Note: Default Lessons are copied to the Custom Lessons screen. Default Lessons cannot be edited.
  3. Tap the Duplicate icon graphic rendering of two identical pages with right-hand corners folded down in the upper right-hand corner of the screen.
  4. Select the lesson you wish to duplicate from the list.
  5. Tap "Duplicate"
    The duplicated lesson appears in the Custom Lessons list.
  6. Continue with steps 5-7 of Edit Lessons to make changes to the duplicated lesson.

Edit a Lesson

Occasionally, you may need to edit a lesson for any number of reasons. This is accomplished from the Lessons screen.

1. Tap the Lessons & Drills button on the Home screen.
2. Tap the Custom Lessons button on the Learning Modes screen.
3. On the Custom Lessons screen, tap the word Edit in the upper right-hand corner of the screen.
screenshot of the Custom Lessons screen with the word Edit circled in red
Note: Default Lessons are not editable. Only Custom Lessons can be edited.
4. Select the lesson to be edited by tapping the name or anywhere to the right of the name.
5. On the Edit Lesson screen, enter or adjust the following information:

6. Add/delete the drills by tapping either Add Drills in the bottom-left corner or Delete Drills in the bottom-right corner of the screen.
The Edit Drill pop-up window opens.

Add drills:

Delete drills:

7. On the Edit Lesson screen, tap Save in the upper-right corner of the screen.
screenshot of the Edit Lesson screen with the word Save circled in red

Delete a Lesson

If you find you have too many lessons or duplicate lessons, you can delete them from the Custom Lessons page.

  1. Tap the Lessons & Drills button on the Home screen.
  2. Tap the Custom Lessons button on the Learning Modes screen.
  3. On the Custom Lessons screen, tap the word Edit in the upper right-hand corner of the screen.
  4. Select the lesson you want to delete by tapping the red circle with the white horizontal line icon graphic rendering of a red circle with a white horizontal line in it next to the name of the lesson.
    screenshot of the Custom Lessons screen with red circle icon circled in gray
    A red Delete buttons opens on the right side of the screen.
  5. Select the red Delete button.
    screenshot of the Custom Lesson screen with the red Delete button circled in gray
    A confirmation box opens. The message reads: Are you sure that you want to delete this lesson? This cannot be undone!
    screenshot of the Confirm popup for deletion of lesson
  6. Select Yes to delete the lesson or Cancel.
  7. Tap Done in the upper right-hand corner of the screen.

Students

About Student Logins

A student account is not required to start using Talking Typer right away. However, student accounts allow administrators and students to follow the history and progress of the individual student. An administrator can creates a User Name and Password (optional) for the student that allows access only to the individual student's information. See Create Student Account for more information. This account is linked to the administrator, allowing administrators to assign the student to a group or particular lessons.

Students can login and work on the lessons assigned to them. Students are not able to access the information of another student through the use of logins.

Login to a Student Account

Logins allow students to access information about their individual progress and assignments. It also allows administrators to keep track of individual progress. If a student is not logged in when completing the drills, the results are not saved to the student's account.

  1. Select the word Login at the top-left corner of the Home screen.
    screenshot of the Home screen with Login circled in red
  2. Enter the user name in the Name field.
    screenshot of a closeup of the Login screen
  3. Enter the password in the Password field.
    Note: Passwords are optional. They not required for students to have an account that is tied to an administrator.
  4. Select the blue Submit button or Cancel.
  5. Tap "OK" in popup window.

When a student logs in, it is indicated on the Home screen. The top button changes from "Talking Typer" to the student's name.
screenshot of the Home screen with the student's name circled in red
This button is now the Student Dashboard button.
screenshot of the Student Dashboard with the button My Lessons
Student's can view and start the lessons assigned to them there.
screenshot of the Student's Lessons screen with the list of assigned lessons

Take a Lesson

Lessons differ from Practice Drills in that results are saved to the student information for the teacher to assess, when the student is logged in. The results are displayed at the end of the lesson and can be reviewed later from the Edit Student screen.

There are two ways to start a lesson: through the Learning Modes screen or through the Student Dashboard.

Take a lesson through the Learning Modes screen:

  1. Tap the Lessons & Drills button on the Home screen.
  2. Tap either the Default Lessons or Custom Lessons button on the Learning Modes screen.
  3. Select a lesson from the list.
    screenshot of the Default Lessons screen showing the list of default lessons
  4. Instructions are displayed on the screen as well as spoken. Press tab to exit the instructions or the blue Instructions button at the top-left of the screen to repeat them.
    screenshot of Lesson screen with blue Instructions button circled in red
  5. Press the green Start button at the top-right of the screen to begin the lesson.
    screenshot of Lesson screen with green Start button circled in red
  6. Type the character, word, or phrase indicated in the instructions, followed by the Space bar.
    Press tab on your keyboard, during the lesson, to hear the current letter.
    screenshot of a lesson showing the phrase to be typed, a blank field, and the time
  7. When the lesson begins, the green Start button becomes a red Stop button. Tap the Stop button in the upper-right corner of the screen to stop the lesson.
    The results are automatically displayed in a pop-up window. Results include words per minute, time in minutes and seconds, accuracy in percentage, and number of errors.
    screenshot of the Your Score pop-up window showing results
  8. Tap OK!.
  9. Tap the back symbol (

Take a lesson through the Student Dashboard:

  1. If not already logged in, tap Login on the Home screen and login. See Login to a Student Account for more information.
  2. If logged in, tap the student Dashboard button on the Home screen.
  3. Tap the My Lessons button on the Student's Dashboard screen.
    screenshot of the student's dashboard screen with My Lessons button
  4. Select one of the assigned lessons by tapping the name of the lesson.
    screenshot of the Student's Lessons screen with the list of assigned lessons
  5. Take lesson.

Keyboard Explorer

Keyboard Explorer is a place to just begin typing and exploring the keys on the keyboard. There are no set directions or timed lessons. Keyboard Explorer displays one letter or character at a time. It is intended to get students oriented to where keys are located on the keyboard.

  1. Select the Keyboard Explorer button on the Home screen.
  2. Start typing.
  3. To exit, press the Back button (

screenshot of Keyboard Explorer screen with the letter S displayed on the screen

Practice Drills

Practice drills allow students to work on particular keyboard activities prior to starting a lesson or between lessons to improve problem areas.

Like lessons, practice drills are divided into two skill levels: Beginner and Advanced. The drills correspond with the Default Lessons. For example, the practice drill "Home keys for the left hand" correspond with the lesson for that same exercise.

Take a Practice Drill

Practice drills provide audio feedback when a wrong key is pushed and a score at the end of the drill, but are not recorded in the student information. In this way, students can practice and receive feedback without it counting either way.

When you have completed a practice drill, you may elect to retake the drill, try a different one, or continue on to an exercise.

Instructions for the drills are included below the drill or can be heard by tapping the blue Instructions button at the top-left of the screen.

  1. Tap the Lessons & Drills button on the Home screen.
  2. Tap the Practice Drills button on the Learning Modes screen.
  3. Select a drill from one of the two skill levels: Beginner or Advanced.
  4. Tap the green Start button (top-right corner) to begin.
  5. Type the character(s), word(s), or phrase(s) indicated.
  6. Press the Space Bar to go to the next character, word, or phrase.
  7. Continue typing until a score is generated. !=http:tech.aph.org/ttios/image/PLScore1.jpg(screenshot of the Your Score pop-up window with words per minute, time, accuracy, and errors).

Alternatively, you can quit the practice drill at any time by tapping the red Quit button (top-left corner). This action returns you to the Practice Lessons screen.

Play Hurry Scurry

Hurry Scurry is a fast paced, fun game that is useful for improving accuracy and speed. Race to type the characters before the green dropping ball hits the ground and turns red.

The speed of the dropping ball can be adjusted by tapping Adjust Speed in the upper-right corner of the screen. Slide the button to the right to make it go faster and to the left to slow it down. Press Done when finished. The default speed is as set at 2 on a scale of 1-10.

  1. Tap the Games button on the Home screen.
  2. Tap the Hurry Scurry button on the Games screen.
    screenshot of the Games screen with Hurry Scurry button
  3. To listen to the instructions, press the blue Instructions button at the top-left of the screen.
  4. To adjust the speed, press the orange Speed button at the top-right of the screen. A Hurry Scurry Speed Adjuster popup window opens. Slide the slider button to the number of your choice. The higher the number, the faster the speed. The default is 2. Press Done when finished adjusting the speed.
  5. Tap the green Start button in the top-right corner to begin the game. The letters to be typed are spoken.
  6. Type the letters before the ball hits the floor. Points are awarded for each correct letter typed.
    Note: Continue typing even when the ball hits the floor. Points are subtracted for every second that the ball is on the floor. The next word does not appear until all the letters are typed correctly. Press Tab on your keyboard to hear the next letter.
  7. Pressing the red Stop button stops the game and produces your score.
    screenshot of Your Score popup with Ok, Quit, and Replay Game options
    Another way to stop the game is by pressing the Escape (ESC) key on your keyboard twice. This quits the game, but does not produce a score.
    screenshot of the Quit popup with Yes and No options

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