We have all seen the hype around the words “coding” and “programming” lately. Schools and colleges are introducing coding as an extra-curricular subject for their students. More people are talking about it, and even more people are excited to learn about it. It’s not surprising that coding is all the rage right now. Child prodigies are taking an interest in the subject to create incredible projects using coding.
But what exactly is coding? And how should your child learn more about the subject?
Coding is the language that creates endless possibilities for us to develop new and innovative computer software, apps, and websites. From the apps on your phone to the browser you are using, all of them have been made using coding.
What Is Coding?
Going by the definition of Google, the process of assigning a code to something for classification or identification To simply describe it, it is the process of converting ideas, creating solutions, and delivering commands in a language best understood by a computer. Coding is said to be how humans interact with computers.
A great way to describe coding is that it is basically a way to communicate between humans and computers during the process. Coding acts as a translator to help translate what humans want to tell computers and vice versa. When humans input numerical sequences, code converts them for the computer to understand. When the computer receives the messages, act on the task and complete it, i.e., change the desktop image.
How Does Coding Work?
Computers operate in their own language, which is called Machine Code. This language commands them to do what they do. The language has been developed through a series of numerical or alphabetical codes. When you input commands into the computer, it instructs the computer to work on specific actions and complete those actions.
Going step by step, the programmer will first write instructions that describe the necessary information to complete or perform a particular task.
Then the computers will analyse the coded manual at a high speed, further executing the task given to them. Ie: running an application.
Coding is required for various tasks, from displaying an image or section of text to changing font styles.
All in all, it is essential to know that programming languages provide the basis for building websites and apps, giving the rules for any form of computer-based technology.
Coding is not just for the programmer but also for the users who interact with websites and apps. The only difference is that the code itself does not show up on the screen. Instead, users will see the result of the input in the form of words and images that the developer of the programme has coded for them to see.
Is Coding Good for Kids?
Although today’s children are heavily exposed to technology, constantly consuming media like YouTube videos, games on their tablets and phones, and social media, they aren’t quite aware of how the technology around them actually works. Since they are so familiar with technology itself, understanding how to create new technology will only develop the various skills that they already have.
Since we live in a very digitalised world where the consumption and usage of technology are increasing day by day, knowing how to code is not only important but also an essential skill for children in the future. Coding is the kind of transferable skill that will not only help them engage in learning something relevant, but also increase the competitive skills a child already has. This will be an add-on as they increasingly develop a problem-solving mentality from a young age.
Here are some reasons why coding is good for kids:
Coding Builds Confidence
Learning how to code is a great way for kids to learn how to create and interact with technology. This means that children will not only consume technology and media, but will also be able to design technology on their own. Creating a base for technology while educating your children will make sure that one day you have the confidence to head out into a work field quietly and prepared to face technological advancements.
Knowing even the basics of coding can mend the ways in which kids communicate and handle technology. Having technology skills will only strengthen their self-esteem and boost their confidence in the long run.
Coding Fosters Creativity
Creativity is definitely an essential skill to develop as it allows us to approach problems with an open mind. This allows us to view the problems with the ability to innovate. To have better innovations and creations, having a wider perspective and an open mind will help. With coding, you will quickly realize that there is always more than one way to approach a problem. Knowing how to code gives children the advantage of building their own video games, apps, websites, and more, so they can watch their ideas come to life.
Coding Teaches Perseverance
Coding equips children to understand trial and error. When they start experimenting on their own, they are able to differentiate between their mistakes and learn from them. The complex nature of coding not only challenges children but can also be quite frustrating.
Navigating through all the hurdles to get what they want will allow children to understand how to solve problems and look for solutions. As the end result is always fruitful and favorable, coding will encourage children to look past the hurdles that arise and work towards it with persistence. It is essential that children confront such challenges at a young age so that they are able to overcome them at a later stage.
Coding Improves Communication
It’s not surprising that building effective communication skills is crucial in order to develop healthy relationships for children. Not only does it enhance the capacity to learn, creating a rich vocabulary to flourish in, coding enhances the creative writing skills of children as well as their oral communication. Coding is just like telling a story where one uses the alphabet and special formulas as a language to convey their commands.
A valuable skill in today’s market is learning how to communicate with computers, which can be done when you learn how to code. Communicating with computers is simply deconstructing ideas and inputting them to a computer in a way that the computer will understand better.
Coding Provides Better Career Opportunities
In the age of technological advancements where data analysis plays an essential role in many companies, equipping yourself with the basics of coding can be a profitable step. Not only that, knowing coding can ease the technical side of your job, making work more bearable.
We are also experiencing heavy automation of job roles by AI and robotics, and this will only increase over time. This makes this the perfect time for your child to start learning to code.
What Is the Right Age to Learn Coding?
Children today are tech-savvy and comfortable with using any form of technology, from smartphones and tablets to computers and laptops. This has similarities with the technological advancements they are facing on a daily basis, and most of them show an interest in coding and programming their very own video games and apps. Most children start to express an interest in creatively building something from scratch, and this can be the perfect time to channel this creativity into encouraging them to learn how to code.
Coding is also great for cognitive development as it stimulates the brain in a way that strengthens the ability to memorise concepts with the implementation and completion of tasks. Children as young as 7 can learn basic programming and coding. Encouraging children by introducing them to coding in their elementary school years can be a perfect time. This way, they can achieve better cognitive development and increase their knowledge by having a strong base at a very young age.
Instilling coding can help them navigate through problems logically, understanding the intricacies and complexities required to solve any challenges that come their way. Even if children do not choose a career path in coding or programming, they will still be at a competitive edge in other career paths as they will be equipped with technology to understand basic concepts, which will grow in high demand in the future.
What Do Kids Learn in a Coding Class?
Coding enables independence and children. Not only do they become more knowledgeable about the digital world but also develop soft skills to be better prepared for the future. Coding has a wide range of benefits, especially for children, as it helps train children for the future from an early age.
It Improves Computational Thinking
Computational thinking helps enable problem-solving in the real world. When we try to teach children competition, we are trying to break down a large problem into simpler, more approachable steps that are easier to solve. Computational thinking is a transferable skill that can be applied to anything, from a difficult Maths problem to attempting to write a creative passage.
When it comes to coding and programming, children will be faced with complex problems that will require them to break them down into simple steps and develop feasible solutions. The solution should be in such a way that not just humans but computers can also understand it.
Boosts Problem-Solving Skills
For children, it is essential to understand why an issue has occurred and what steps they can take to resolve that particular issue. For this, it’s important to make sure they build up their problem-solving skills. Problem-solving ability is a key skill that employers look for in employees. With the help of coding, children are about to get stuck in multiple stages through which they will understand how to identify an issue and formulate solutions on their own. They will learn how to implement solutions and gauge how successful the solution was for further reference.
It Promotes Experiential Learning
Through coding, children are working in a process through which they learn by doing. This has long-term effects on the learning process as it directly reflects on the experience they have. I like the traditional methods of learning as students will just mug up what is written in their books. Here, students will observe and practically assemble the code that they are writing. This eliminates the lack of understanding as their involvement in the process of learning by actual experience how to do it by themselves builds up the independence and self-esteem of the child.
It Helps With Writing Skills and Creativity
Oftentimes, anything remotely technical or computer-related is dismissed as Monday or boring. But these fields require creativity and imagination, which makes them a lot of fun. Coding is unquestionably a superpower for children who are creative and want to create their own apps, video games, and so on. Full-stop coding can really make their most creative dreams come to life.
Over time, coding also builds up communication skills, leading to better writing. They are able to convey complex ideas in more simple terms and vice versa. Not only are they learning how to communicate with computers, but they’re also growing in their ability to learn how to break down and understand complex ideas and explain them to others as well.
It Elevates Academic Performance
Coding and maths are very similar and extremely related. Developing strong math skills can help you understand coding better. This can also be vice versa; her childhood is inches in coding and she is more likely to acquire strong mathematical skills while also having fun. Developing coding and mass will help them navigate through various areas of not only their personal lives but also academics.
Inclusion of Coding in Schools
With increased technology and the familiarity that children have with technology, coding has become an essential skill to develop to prepare them for the future job market. With automation and digitalisation, technology is developing at an increasingly astonishing rate. Coding plays a huge role in the evolution of technology and, with time, it will become important as new technology advancements and automation are introduced. Looking at it in the light of innovation, being equipped with coding skills can help you contribute to shaping the future with your creativity.
According to a 2019 study conducted by the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) UK, interest in science has dropped 10% among 9–12-year-olds over the last four years. The reason for this could be the method in which students are taught interesting subjects like science. Students may find it difficult to cope due to the mundane nature of teaching, which reduces the interest they have in the subjects.
Although children this young are inquisitive and have a thirst for knowledge about their surroundings and nature, they are unaware of the resources available to them to learn. In order to venture into the digital world, they need to be guided step-by-step, which requires experienced teachers who are able to educate young students about coding effectively.
It is possible that most schools are not including programming as a core subject because of the lack of availability of quality educators. Programming is said to be an all-or-nothing skill: the code we write will either run or not. If the educator isn’t thorough with the concept themselves, they will not be able to teach it to their minds, making it very difficult for them to pretend like they are aware of the subject.
Subjects like English and history are relatively easier to teach as they don’t require hands-on learning. Maths can be taught through guides and solution books. But there are multiple programmes that can be written in order to compute the exact same result. It is important that students are under the guidance of teachers who are extremely knowledgeable with regard to this subject and are able to convey the nuances that come with it.
There are multiple online resources that can better cater to students who are willing to learn more about coding.
How Can I Get My Child Interested in Coding?
Coding can be a difficult topic to introduce to your children, but there are ways that help grab the attention of students who show an interest in the subject. Here are some ways you, as a parent, can get their attention:
Focus on Practical Learning
Unless your child is actively involved in something, they aren’t going to take an interest in it. Children need to thoroughly understand what something is in order for them to care about it fully. Instead of explaining to them thoroughly what coding is, it is better to show it to them through practical activities. Once they understand how interesting it is to create something with the help of technology, they are bound to spark an interest in coding.
We need to understand what coding really is and how it can help in problem-solving. Without the knowledge of the opportunities available to them that will bring them closer to what they love, they are not going to make the effort to learn more about the subject. It’s essential that children have a broader understanding of how coding could help them in the long run before even delving deeper into it.
We often get really invested in the idea that coding is only about math, science, and technology. This isn’t entirely true, as creativity is an essential part of coding, meaning that one can bring their creative ideas to life full stop. This can be drawings, games, apps, art, or anything they want.
From building with legos to programming, children enjoy being able to independently create things they can call their own. The whole purpose of coding is to be able to create something new. Once parents instil the idea that coding is just another creative outlet for students to explore and let their imaginations run wild, they are bound to dip their seats into this technology-driven form of expressiveness.
The internet is filled with interesting influences that can pique your child’s interest. In the world of the internet and influencers, many personalities have found a way to gauge the interest of young minds. These personalities have a neck that encourages them to learn multiple skills, including coding.
This necessarily may not be another celebrity, but the influencers available on YouTube and Instagram are great role models for children who want to grow. They range from college dropouts to founders and CEOs of tech companies, with interesting stories to tell and incredible content to offer. It’s in your child’s interest as to who will inspire them to pick up programming.
The Gamification of Learning
With the options available online, we are not at a loss of resources to learn. The internet provides numerous games to play for children who want to be kept on the edge of interest at all times. These games not only have visual appeal but are also great for increasing knowledge about the practical application of programming.
Kids enjoy it as it’s not only interesting but a really fun way to spend more time engaging in coding. As they are being tested during these games, the levels of retention and speed of learning gradually increase as well. Everything is more enjoyable when it’s done through a process of gamification, as it increases the fun and creates healthy challenges to overcome.
What Is the Right Learning Path for Coding for Kids?
While most are very excited and intrigued by coding, we are unaware of how to begin learning more about it. Here are some ways coding for kids can be approached:
Basic Fundamental Concepts
A common mistake that we all make is not getting a strong base. It is very important to make sure that you have your fundamentals in order to proceed and learn more about coding. Students can start by picking one programming language, clearly understanding the basics of programming first, and then jumping through the next level. Making sure all the doubts and confusions are clarified is important in order to avoid making mistakes in the first stages. Understanding concepts that are advanced will only be possible if the basics are thoroughly grasped.
One can read all the books they want about coding, but without sitting down on a computer and actually practising these codes, they will not understand the subject entirely. It is easy to read about coding, assuming the challenges that will come your way, but practical coding will not work in this way.
It’s important to drive directly into the practical side of coding and challenge yourself with the loops and variables that will come your way. Over time, writing the code, making mistakes, optimising, and searching for different solutions will help develop your cognitive skills and problem-solving ability, making you a better programmer.
It’s normal for programmers to get stuck and make mistakes during this stage, but building your own project from tutorials and exercises you have previously learned will help you navigate through your mistakes. Starting small with basic websites can be one way of learning how to code. Building your own projects can help put the knowledge you have gained to use.
Use Online Resources
The internet is filled with multiple online resources that are paid and free. These sources can help you start your programming journey along with YouTube channels and Instagram influences. Learning to code on Udemy and Coursera will help you learn to code, and building a habit of reading blogs and articles regarding programming can also be beneficial.
Ask for Help
The best way to understand coding is to learn from someone who already knows the subject. Learning under the guidance of someone who is knowledgeable and well equipped with coding can help you master the subject quickly. You can also contribute to open source projects that allow you to participate and discuss your code with programmers who are experts on the subject.
This will help you get a second opinion on your code. Coding is a skill that can be improved through guidance, and programmers should not have a rate when they are required to help. It’s normal for beginners to make mistakes and shy away from help, but no matter how stupid your question looks, it’s better in the long run for you to get it cleared and understand your mistakes.
Where Can My Child Start Learning to Code?
The list of platforms through which children can start learning coding is given below.
Working on an ideal subscription model stencil allows users to publish their own software across platforms, including iPhone, iPad, and Android, as well as Windows, Mac, and Linux. Providing kid-friendly graphics, the website allows kids to build their own words and characters. The support in this forum allows learning to take place through game development and designing.
Scratch programming is free platform that enables children as young as elementary school to learn coding. The website is free of charge for block coding and has its own programming language consisting of graphical blocks. It’s also one of the largest online communities, allowing children to come together to programme and share their projects, ranging from stories, games, and animations all over the world.
How Do I Select the Right Programme for My Child?
Selecting the right programme can be a tricky task for a lot of parents. With the wide range of options available not only online but also offline, here are some ways you can select the best coding programme for your child.
Although your child might be very excited to learn about coding, it is important to make this process as easy as possible. The best way to ensure this is to eliminate any technological challenges that are going to come their way. Whether it is online or offline, it is best to choose a programme that they have convenient access to.
Functionality will benefit them in the long run, as the more practical the programme is, the more likely they are going to have an interest in pursuing it. If the programme is difficult to access and complicated, the interest that they have built up towards coding will not stay consistent.
Coding is a very interesting subject if taught right. It is crucial for the learning process to be a two-way process of interaction between the teacher and student. This way, your child will stay engaged with the ideas being taught and find it easy to get their doubts resolved. When did interaction become the way the tutor would provide personalised attention to your child? The concept should also be interesting enough to grab the attention of your child.
Across the internet, online platforms require parents and students to input their personal information. It’s important to make sure the platform that you are using does not leave any room for invasion of privacy. The instructor must have the best inches of your child, as when they go online to learn more about coding, they should not be exposed to any unsafe threats of any form.
The learning of your child is directly correlated to the qualifications and experience of the educator. It’s not surprising that we all want our children to not only learn the best but also learn from the best. While on this mission, we need to make sure that the programme that you choose to enrol your child in has a teaching staff that is well-versed with what they are teaching and has considerable knowledge and credibility to teach.
FAQs on Coding for Kids
The frequently asked questions about Coding for Kids are explained below.
Q.1: Is coding good for kids?
A.1: Yes! Coding improves various skills. Children who code are seen to improve their communication skills, have better creativity, improve their math and writing skills, and show an increase in confidence.
Q.2: Can a 7-year old do coding?
A.2: Children as young as 7 can begin coding and learn the basics of programming. Technology has become a part of our daily lives, making it easier to access. Children as young as 5 who find reading and writing difficult can learn to code with block-based coding.
Q.3: How do I introduce my child to coding?
A.3: Young children can be introduced to programming and coding with fun and interactive games available on the internet. Children can learn the mechanics of coding through websites like Scratch Coding, Wiingy Studios, Minecraft with Mods, and many more options available according to their interests.
Q 4: How will coding be useful in the future?
A 4: Coding will be very useful with the increase in technology and automation; it will help build programmes for new forms of technology.
Q 5: Does coding require math?
A 5: Coding revolves around building logic with numbers. This means having strong math skills is important for programmers. Lacking certain concepts of math will leave them inefficient while using certain tools required for coding.
Q 6:What is the difference between coding and programming?
A 6: Programming revolves around the process of creating programs, involving the ratification of codes. On the other hand, coding is a part of programming. Coding uses the help of languages understood by machines to write codes.
Q 7: Is coding a useful skill for children?
A 7: Not only does coding look good on a resume, but coding will also help those skills required to master jobs. One can develop great problem-solving skills and improve logic in the course of learning how to code.
We hope this article on coding for kids is helpful for you. If you have any queries regarding best coding for kids, ping us through the comment box below and we will get back to you as soon as possible.