Does learning how to code deserve an educational place alongside reading, writing and arithmetic? Many educators and parents are looking for resources that effectively teach coding for essential problem-solving skills and digital understanding.
If you are interested in getting your children involved in cutting-edge knowledge, here are five great ways for kids to learn how to code:
Creative Coding Classes
While some schools are now offering classes in coding as part of the normal curriculum, many parents are turning to extracurricular courses for their children to learn how to code. Coding classes provide an easy and fun way to learn how to create computer programs in a group setting. As early as Kindergarten, children can create their own custom computer games and stories as they drag and drop blocks of code to see how the pieces work together.
There are dozens of fantastic websites that allow children to learn how to code. Many offer free access or minimal costs to use the site. Be sure to check out these favorite coding sites:
• Code.org – Learn how to write programs and simple games with basic algorithms, repeat loops and conditionals.
• Kodable – Good for beginners to learn introductory coding concepts.
• Scratch – Offers both a Junior and Regular version to create animations, stories and games with colorful coding blocks.
• KidsRuby – Download the program to learn about the Ruby programming language.
If you wish to download a coding app to your iPhone or iPad, these fun apps are a great way to learn how to code.
• Hopscotch – This free app uses a drag-and-drop interface to create movies and games easily.
• Move the Turtle – Children learn coding by giving instructions to the turtle. Each lesson slowly increases in complexity.
• Daisy the Dinosaur – Young kids will learn the basics about sequencing, loops and events with this fun and free app.
Educational Board Games
If you want your kids to learn the basics of computer coding away from technology, these educational board games are ideal. Best of all, the whole family can learn programming skills together.
• Code Monkey Island – This board game uses cards to teach assignment operations, adaptability, looping, strategic problem solving and Boolean logic.
• Code Master – Children use programming logic in each of the sixty levels to move their Avatar through the game.
• Qwirkle – Qwirkle provides pattern recognition and strategy that is useful in learning how to code.
• Bloxels – This grid-like game uses blocks to represent keys, coins, enemies, entry points, walls and hazards. In addition, children can make their grids turn into a playable video game on a tablet or smartphone.
Kids will love to learn how to code by programming their own robot. Check out these fun robotic choices.
• Primo – Designed to teach younger children how to make simple sub-routines, Primo contains a wooden robot that is controlled by placing colored shapes into the board.
• Robot Turtles – Kids learn programming skills by picking a turtle, setting up a maze and collecting a gem.
• Dash – Dash is a programmable robot that is controlled by using specific apps. The nice thing about Dash is that older kids can use more advanced programs to control the robot.
By engaging in the creative process of coding, children are developing lifelong skills that will significantly empower their future. So have fun with any or all of these great ways to teach your children how to code.