Julian and Rauf
for the very young
(of Karen's Toys, Gauteng South Africa) enrolled
son Julian on the ComputerFun course when he was
three years old. "I looked for a place where
Julian could learn how to handle a computer
properly and have fun.
He was using his
software but could not get in and out of his
programs by himself and he had developed a strong
interest in computers. He could use a mouse
properly but the problem was Julian was messing
about within Windows and having a great time
destroying things - deleting icons and files on
the hard drive.
My husband Dave and
I have been in the computer industry for twenty
years programming in COBOL, Fortran, and
Powerhouse. Most of the knowledge we gained on PCs
was self-taught. We decided on K-Net as the
computer learning environment for Julian.
mentors at K-Net who work with the young children
are educationists who have experience in dealing
with young children. Not everyone can take a young
child and teach him/her how to use a computer.
K-Net's mentors are
friends and they let the kids learn and advance at
their own pace. The mentors do not hold kids back.
They know exactly what the kids can cope with and
what they are not ready for. Julian learns on
Microsoft software that he has on his own computer
At K-Net, he
doesn't have to share a computer which means that
he gains his own experience, his own knowledge and
he can learn how to find things out for himself.
loves the K-Net environment. He is normally
reserved, shy and quiet. At K-Net he is full of
life, talkative and highly creative. He loves
computers and even attends the K-Net holiday
courses which run from 09:00 until 13:00, a long
time for a 4 year old.
Julian could do before he went to K-Net *
use the mouse * find his way around within his
programs * destroy files! * generally mess about
on the computer
Julian can do after being at K-Net for 18 months
* switch on the computer * get in and out of
Windows * load his own CDs and programs * identify
and use different tools * use the keyboard (he can
recognise all the letters) * create computer
pictures from his ideas * save his pictures *
close programs * exit Windows properly
He also knows how
not to destroy icons and files. Julian gains
knowledge of computers every week. His vocabulary
has also improved through the lateral learning
that takes place during the K-Net sessions.
He is allowed to
work on the computer at home unsupervised and he
does not even call for help. He knows exactly what
to do and he completes whatever he sets out to do.
project-based approach gives kids direction and
helps them to know when to use the computer tools
available in the software. K-Net is a wonderful,
warm and friendly environment for kids of all
ages. I feel safe with the people there and know
that if I am caught up in traffic and don't arrive
when the session ends, Julian will be safe and
Julian is currently
attending two courses at K-Net - TechnoFun and he
is just starting the Advanced TechnoFun programme
for his level. It's really quite amazing what he
has achieved considering that he can't read yet.