Morse Code Impediments:
I.e. "Initial Difficulties"
While teaching morse code to folks over the years, I made a
study of a few things:
Besides the obvious, in that everyone will tell you to quit
trying to count the dits and the dahs, I found that in spite
of themselves, the attempt to "count them" still continues.
Now, how to help individuals to deal with this problem?
I decided to try something that would influence how people
react, and push them in the right direction.
The method starts off somewhat intimidating, but has really
consistently paid off (after you convince folks how to handle
the bombardment they are faced with).
There are actually only 2 problems that exist when most folks
are at the very beginning stage, or trying to learn Morse Code
at 5WPM .
I discovered an interesting facit of dealing with this problem,
in that if you can for just a little while convince people that
they will hear the same character repeated quickly several times,
they can adapt to it rather quickly.
There is still a tendancy to wait and "mull-over"
the character when they know it's going to be repeated, but what
I found was that there was a definite advantage to hitting them
with the character quickly.
In short, they were able to deal with the issue of literally
being "run-over" with consectutive characters, with
worrying about losing some characters.
They were told that they should try to train themselves to
"respond" to the first character they hear of
the series of repeats, without being concerned with getting it
wrong. Avoid "mulling over" the character they heard.
Hard as it seems to believe, those errors will correct themselves
as time progresses.
- They are initially convinced that faster code puts the letters
too close together, which make them feel "run-over"
- They basically want time to "mull over" the character
before writing it down.
Note that these two initial problems are tightly related,
and interestingly enough are really more of a psychological hangup,
than anything else. I'm sure that you would agree that most of
us do not want to be run-over by fast running characters, and
that we like being "comfortable" in our learning process.
There are a couple of associative issues that will greatly
When the code characters start, be relaxed, but with your
pen or pencil already on the paper!
You know that there will be 3 consectutive "V's"
and then then 3 more, as attention preludes.
You also know what the first letter of the initial series
of repeats will be (like e,i,s,h,5), so you can be prepared toWRITE
in SCRIPT the very first letter you hear. But be prepared to
respond to it.
WRITE SLOWLY, very, very SLOWLY that letter.
As you are SLOWLY writing that letter, you will be bombarded
with that same letter 4 more times, but let it slide off your
As the first letter in the next series of repeats is heard,
SLOWLY write that letter, again as the next 4 repeats bombard
Continue this process as the code characters are presented,
but be prepared for the run of characters where there will be
only 4 characters in the repeating set.
Later, there will be only 3 characters in the repeating set,
and even later there will be on 2 characters in the repeating
Finally, the last of the series will be only 1 character,
with no repeats.
In summary, I have over the years found this method so successful
that I have found a 100% success rate with everyone that used
Consider that while all of these code characters are popping
at the same speed, the speed at which you start copying is actually
only 1/5th of the character speed. This computes to only 3WPM
if you choose the 15WPM chracter rate! When you get to the 3
characters per set in the run, you will have reached a comfortable
5WPM. These series of runs will quite literally take you from
3WPM to about 10WPM without changing speeds, just by staying
in there longer into the run. If you get used to the 15WPM series
and the 18WPM series, you will find that 13WPM seems just entirely
By the way, in the past where folks did things this way, there
was no 13WPM barrier, and their base speed was never less
InitialDifficulties.html - SfE-DCS, ddf -