Teach Kids About Computers

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Teaching kids about computers can prepare them for using the numerous forms of technology that are present throughout today’s society. In addition to providing entertainment to kids, computers can also be used as a resource for completing tasks such as homework assignments or research papers. Just as with any individual who is new to computers, you should start with teaching kids some computer basics; such as using a mouse and keyboard, and about general computer etiquette. Continue reading this article to learn about the ways in which you can begin teaching kids about computers.


[Edit]Teaching Preparation

  1. Verify that the kids you are teaching are at least 3 years of age. Kids aged 3 and older are more likely to grasp and understand basic computer concepts; whereas kids younger than 3 may struggle with learning about computers, especially since they are still developing their visual, language, and speaking skills.
  2. Install kid-friendly input devices on the computers. In order for kids to learn about computers efficiently, computers should be outfitted with mouses and keyboards that kids can physically use and understand.
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    • Choose a mouse that fits comfortably in the kids’ hands. If kids are physically unable to hold or handle a mouse, they may not have the opportunity to navigate through menus on a computer or perform basic tasks.
    • Choose keyboards that contain larger key labels and fewer keys, especially if you are teaching very young kids. Some keyboards are color-coded in a manner that will enhance kids’ learning experience.
    • Visit the “Macworld” website listed in the Sources section of this article to review specific product recommendations on mouses and keyboards developed for kids.
  3. Choose computer software or learning games appropriate for the kids’ age group. In most cases, you should choose software programs or learning tools that are engaging and fun, which can significantly enhance kids’ learning experience and their desire to learn.
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    • Visit the “Teach Kids How” website provided to you in the Sources section of this article to access a list of age-appropriate websites and learning tools you can use to teach kids about computers.

[Edit]Teaching Kids about Computers

  1. Teach kids basic computer etiquette and ways to take care of computers. Examples of computer etiquette include understanding that food and drink must be kept away from computers at all times, and that keyboards, mouses, and other accessories should be handled gently without pounding or other physical abuse.
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    • Monitor kids’ computer use at all times to verify that they are handling and treating the computers safely and respectfully. This can help prevent kids from causing any accidents that can permanently damage computers; such as dropping laptops on the floor, or spilling food and drinks on computers and keyboards.
  2. Show kids how to hold and use a computer mouse. Since most computers are driven by commands from a mouse as opposed to keyboard commands, teaching kids how to use a mouse is a major first step in learning about computers.
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    • Modify the mouse settings on your computer to achieve a slower mouse speed, if needed. A slower mouse speed can help kids become familiar with the process for using a mouse, especially if you are teaching young toddlers or children who are still developing their motor skills.
  3. Teach kids about typing on a keyboard. Kids should be taught to position their hands appropriately over a keyboard to type, as opposed to adapting a “hunt and peck” typing method.
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    • Use typing software that teaches kids about proper hand and finger placement on a keyboard, and that contains a series of lessons that progress as kids develop their typing skills.
  4. Teach kids how to use the Internet for research and homework. The Internet can be a resourceful tool in completing homework assignments, and can be an ideal way for kids to strengthen their computer skills.
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    • Show kids how to enter specific keywords and queries into search engines such as Google, Bing, or Yahoo. For example, if a kid’s homework assignment is about alligators, show them how to enter specific keyword phrases into a search engine, such as “types of alligator species,” or “breeds of alligators.”
    • Teach kids about ways to find legitimate information sources. For example, show kids how to choose websites that can provide reliable information on a topic, such as websites that end in either “.edu,” or “.org.”


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