ATTENTION WINDOWS USERS: Click and play version here. NO INSTALLATION REQUIRED.
After a bit of reflection on the best way to handle this, I’ve written a free computer program to help create finger or word drills for students and educators. The program has about 10 preset lists and allows you to create and load your own custom finger drills.
The video tutorial is here.
If you hate computers, I created about 10 drills using this program and I share them here.
For a quick text tutorial:
- Download and install Python 3.
- Get the program text at this location or this location. Copy and paste it into a notepad file.
- Save the notepad file, preferably in its own folder by itself.
- The program should say something like name.txt. If you don’t see the .txt, you need to look up how to show hidden file extensions.
- Change that .txt to a .py. Double left click and the program will launch.
- The black box will give you a series of 13 numbers and their corresponding “drill list.” You can enter the number of the category you want, or create your own custom list. At this time, custom lists only work properly if you use single words.
- Once you’ve chosen a category or created a list, you choose the wpm and number of minutes. The program will then create a text file by multiplying wpm * minutes. AKA, 225 wpm * 10 minutes is like 2,000 words. If you enter a very large number here, it may cause problems, like a computer freeze. I would not advise entering more than 300 wpm for more than 300 minutes (90,000 words). As a matter of fact, do not do it.
- Having a finger drill by itself is useless. You can use my transcript marker or Todd Olivas’s slasher to automatically mark the program for speed dictation.