Coding is definitely the way of the future, and it is important to start teaching kids about coding as early as possible. Kids as young as five and six years old can be introduced to the world of coding, as long as you do it in a way that works for this age group (ie short lessons to hold their attention better). Here are some things you can do to get your kids more excited about learning coding.
1. Start with Basic Electronics
If you are just introducing kids to the world of coding, start them out with basic electronics. Show them how to experiment with light bulbs and batteries. When they see that their experiments work, chances are that they are going to want to learn more about how they work. This is when you can start introducing them to coding, so they can put what they are learning to practical use.
2. Encourage Experimentation
It is important to give kids learning tools that are age-appropriate. This gives them a chance to learn at their own pace, and to discover things on their own. Encourage them to experiment to find out how things work without having to refer to a text book. They may make a lot of mistakes, but they will learn a lot as they are going, and there will come a point when they will have the satisfaction of creating a code that works. Some popular tools for students include Daisy the Dinosaur (ages 6-10), Hopscotch (ages 8-12) and Scratch (ages 8-16).
3. Show them the Creative Side of Coding
Coding isn’t just about mathematics and science. There is just as much creativity involved, and kids can have a lot of fun with it. For instance, coding is used to create a lot of things, including making drawings come to life, robots, and many other applications. Since kids love to create things, it is only natural that they would love coding, if they are shown how to see it from this point of view.
4. Get them New Gear
Your kids may be a lot more interested in coding on a smartphone than they are your old laptop. So, upgrade to new gear. You can trade in your gadgets at Sell My iPhone, and then use the money to put towards a smartphone for your kids to practice coding on. This is a great way to get rid of old gadgets that are no longer of much use to you, and to get kids more excited about the world of coding.
5. Give them the Right Tools
There are learning tools, and then there are learning tools. Not all tools are going to work for all students, so you need to find the tools that you know your kids are going to be able to understand and actually enjoy using. Scratch is a great place to start. It is actually the first program created to help children with programming. It has most of the essential elements of programming, so kids can learn the basics.
6. Find their Passions
Learning basic coding can be quite boring. But, if you are able to apply it to something that kids find interesting, they are going to be more excited about learning coding. There are loads of apps they can use that focus on game design, animation, drawing, and more. Or, you can buy them kits such as Lego Mindstorms, which let kids build robots, and then create programs to make the robots work. When they can bring their ideas to life, they will start to really want to get into coding.