Coding is not an easy concept to grasp, even for the technologically advanced adults out there! However, with 5.2 million workers in the US working in the tech sector, the youth of today must understand what coding is and why it’s so crucial. If you’re not sure where to start, read on for top tips when it comes to explaining coding to kids.
What is coding?
Let’s start with the basics. What exactly is coding?
In its most basic terms, coding is the process of giving computers instructions in a language that they understand. Computers don’t come with a wealth of knowledge like we do, so they need to be given specific instructions to perform tasks.
As such, all apps, computer programs, and systems are created with computer programming and codes.
Why is it important that kids learn about coding?
Learning about coding isn’t just about creating cool robots that can (partially) take over the world. Coding is extremely beneficial for every child. Just some of the benefits of coding include:
- It helps nurture creativity – coding is a creative process that involves building something. As such, coding helps children to be imaginative, creative thinkers.
- It helps with problem-solving skills – coding at its very core is all about problem-solving. Anyone that has ever learned code will know how challenging it can be, so teaching children how to code helps them to stick with a problem and find a solution.
- It improves arithmetic – coding can help children develop their math skills by making math fun and engaging. Most of the time, children aren’t even aware they are improving their mathematics when they learn to code using online videos and other avenues.
How to explain coding to kids?
So, now you know the benefits of kids coding. But how do you show them how to code as a parent?
Firstly, it’s important to simplify things. If you overcomplicate matters, not only will you confuse your child, but you might put them off for life! If you’re going to explain coding, be sure to do so in a simplified way, using clear language and analogies.
You should also make it fun. If coding feels like a game, kids will be more likely to pay attention and listen. Games are also easier to understand than theory, so try to start by creating simple projects to help your kids understand how basic coding works. Then, you can start to think about trickier theories.
Now it’s time to let the kids have a go! Children learn best by doing, so don’t be afraid to leave them to it. They will make mistakes, but that’s all part of the fun.
A few last words
If you don’t have the knowledge or confidence to teach your kids about coding, there are plenty of weekend classes, summer camps, and online tutorials that can give your kids a head start.
Although teaching your kids how to code may seem daunting, with tech salaries set to reach six figures soon, there’s never been a better time to get started. Whether you teach them yourself or pay for tuition, you’ll be glad that you did.