I love to share great resources for homeschool families, and free access is a bonus! So today I want to recommend two free homeschool typing programs that my kids use with great success: Typing.com and Typeracer.com. Good typing skills are so important to have in today’s world, and free and easy to achieve!. Both of these free typing programs include fun games and make it so easy to teach keyboarding skills for homeschool families.
Long gone are the days of clunking around on an old-fashioned typewriter with a top-fold book of boring typing lessons. (Or learning to type on the Apple II computer like I did in the 1980’s!) I remember those days, and because of them, I did not look forward to teaching my own children to type. Thankfully, the internet has provided a wealth of free typing lessons that fit perfectly into any homeschool program you use. You don’t need a special curriculum or typing books, just access to the internet!
My second son is the most interested in computer use and keyboarding skills, so when he was about 11 or 12 I searched online for free homeschool typing programs. Typing.com was the first one we tried, and loved it. At his age, he didn’t need much of my help to get started. There are many great features, including custom lessons and progress reports, but since my son is older, I just let him go at his own pace. He loves racing the clock and watching his typing speed increase.
If you want a bit more control, you can create a teacher account to oversee your child’s lesons and progress, as well as create custom lessons based on your homeschool curriculum.
Typing.com is a completely free program. There are multple skill levels to complete, and plenty of instruction for good habits, correct posture, and practicing specific types of documents with instant feedback on speed and accuracy. In addition to typing lessons, there are free typing games that allow students to practice in a fun way. For even more computer skills, check out the lesson plans on digital literacy and coding basics.
My son actually discovered TypeRacer on his own. He has had a lot of fun with this. We know that play is one of the best ways to reinforce learning, and TypeRacer is just that! It is a good fit for any student that has mastered basic typing and would like to increae their speed and try typing different kinds of text.
Students create their own race car, and then choose whether they would like to race the clock or race other online typists. One of the program features TypeRacer includes is “Universes,” which are themed races, like Bible, foreign languages, Star Wars, jokes, movies, video games, and more. I love these because they are kind of a modern twist on an old concept: copy work. I use copy work for language arts in our homeschool beause it reinforces spelling, vocabulary, and grammar. Typing is another great way to do this, and TypeRacer’s specific themes makes it possible.
Here’s an example from a “Lord of the Rings” race:
You may learn something, and whether what you see be fair or evil, that may be profitable, and yet it may not. Seeing is both good and perilous. Yet I think, Frodo, that you have courage and wisdom enough for the venture, or I would not have brought you here.
Thanks to these two free homeschool typing programs, my son is now able to type quickly, around 85 wpm. His touch typing skills are amazing! While his older brother still perfers the hunt and peck method, younger brother has applied for an online transcription job and is hoping to begin earning money from home with his new skill! (Check out Rev.com if you are interested.)
My youngest daughter is also learing to type. Both kids now prefer to type their school assignments, such as Institute for Excellence in Writing reports.
Benefits of Typing Lessons
I am so thankful that my mom taught me to type when she homeschooled me. I began learning with an old-fashioned instruction book from the library, and masking tape covering the keys on our computer. It was effective, though! After college, my first job out of college was in a law firm where I did legal transcription. Many years later, when I was in a very difficult situation as a single mother, I secured a job in a local hospital doing medical transcirption. My typing skills were such a blessing!
Fast forward a few more years. In 2009 I started my blog, and in 2020, I published my first book. I have been blessed to be a stay-at-home mom and still earn a bit of an income through various channels, and almost every job or business I’ve had involved typing. With work-from-home jobs becoming so common, a good typing speed can open up many different opportunities for income. This is a also great option for moms who need (or want) to work and homeschool.
I love that this is one subject that is so fun, I don’t have to force it or oversee it. My son just hops on the computer and does it on his own. My favorite parts are the free online lessons, different games, and adaptation to student’s skill level. After our experience, this homeschool mom gives both Typing.com and TypeRacer a positive review for homeschool typing. Whether you have elementary students or high school students, I highly recommend both of these free homeschool typing programs.
Along with typing, I believe effective writing is a necessary skill. Read my blog post “Why You Should Teach Your Children to Write Well.” You can also read my full list of curriculum choices here.