How to Raise a Kid Who Loves to Code
Categories: Tech

How to Raise a Kid Who Loves to Code

Not-so-newsflash: We are living in the digital era. We survive on our smart phones, read news on our laptops and take pictures with our contacts. If we’re experiencing all these things now (after growing up kids o’ the ’90s), just imagine how tech-driven the world will be when today’s kiddos are grown. That’s why Code.org has made it its mission to get coding into curriculums for students at schools nationwide. As part of this initiative, Code.org has recently launched Code Studio, an easy to follow, interactive open-source learning platform designed to teach students the basics of computer science.

If you’ve ever tried your hand at Java or Dreamweaver, you’re probably aware that it might not make much sense to (or remotely interest) an eight-year-old. That’s why Code Studio has found a way to teach the basics of coding through puzzles and games. The lessons, which are suitable for kids K-12, kick off by guiding an Angry Bird through a puzzle to catch a green pig. To move the bird, you have to drag and drop commands (which are really sneaky lil HTML in disguise) into the workspace, then press go and watch him move.

Some of the other lessons include: how to create an interactive greeting card, coding basics through the popular game Minecraft and developing your own iPhone game. Code.org has even recruited big names like Mark Zuckerberg and Bill Gates to film video segments to introduce new concepts. Talk about some great TAs…

While these lessons will teach kids the fundamentals behind coding, don’t expect them to be writing up a design for the new Facebook after they’ve completed one course. The lessons focus more on the idea and process behind coding, helping kids get used the the process. That way when they are eventually introduced to a program like Dreamweaver, it won’t look quite so foreign.

If it turns out your child is a coding whiz and wants something a little more challenging, they can graduate to Codecademy, which focuses less on the games and puzzles and more directly with code.

In a video shared by Code.org they mention that by 2020 two million computer jobs are predicted to go unfilled, simply because the market is expanding faster than we can train for it. If letting our kids chase birds and destroy digital zombies is what gets them jump-started for a future career, we’re all for it.

Try this out with your kids and lets us know what they think of it! 

(feature photo via The Conversation)