In the current digital world, coding is no longer reserved for the elite as it increasingly becomes a vital skill for kids and adults alike. This explains the increasing popularity of kids coding courses, with the majority of parents insisting that their kids get the upper hand by learning this technical education. While your kid may not have dreams of advancing in computer science and any other tech-related field, coding classes equip children with the necessary skills in the modern industry. Unfortunately, most parents, especially those who aren’t tech-savvy, face the serious challenge of finding the best coding Programs for kids. If you are in this fold, consider the following tips.
Find Great Coding Programs for Your Kids
Like other subjects in the education curricula, programming classes for kids also vary with age. While there is no perfect age for your child to start coding classes, kids from 5 years can start learning how to code through gamification. Note that there are classes for young kids, those aged between 8 and 15, and teens. Choose a coding program that suits your kid according to his/her age for a better learning experience.
Your Kid’s Interest
There are plenty of programming languages that your kid can enroll in, and programming classes for kids offer courses on different languages. Therefore, it is best to identify the best programming languages for kids before enrolling your kid in any program. At such a young age, kids learn based on their interests. Therefore, developing their interest in a specific language is key.
With the age and suitable programming languages identified, you should then focus on finding a programming teacher with good experience. Teaching coding to kids and even adults requires an in-depth knowledge of programming languages and other relevant fields. It is better if the teacher is an experienced programmer, as they will know how to teach your kids better. You should explore the teacher’s experience in teaching children.
Still on this, you should consider the student-teacher ratio. An effective learning program should be an interactive class, which is determined by the ratio of students to teachers. The class size directly affects the individual attention provided to students. Since student attention significantly determines the effectiveness of learning to code, opt for coding programs with a good student/teacher ratio.
Offline vs Online Classes
Should your kid take an online or offline class? If you prefer homeschooling, you may enroll your kid in an online course. Fortunately, several websites, such as The Coder School, offer online programming languages to kids. These websites have specific kid-friendly coding courses that eliminate the complexity of learning to code while remaining effective. You can as well find great local offline classes by asking around from various references or doing some research.
Like any other school, you should consider the price or charges of the school. While some coding programs are free, others charge hundreds of dollars. What differentiates these two programs is the nature of lessons offered and the age of children accepted. Elementary kids will benefit from block-based coding classes, while older kids and teens can handle text-based coding, which is slightly expensive.
You should also consider how the coding program’s schedule fits your family calendar. The best coding programs offer various class options and duration that are advantageous to self-paced students. With this, students who miss sessions can recover at their own pace. The coding school should also have a defined teaching methodology that all teachers should follow, and parents can follow it through. You can also find out computational thinking for kids.
The best coding class should outline the following in details;
- Methodology in which the content is delivered
- How content varies with age
- If the program is student-centered, teacher-centered, or a mix
- Training and experience of their teachers
- How students are evaluated
The Coding Curriculum
Great coding programs should provide an opportunity for students to learn a general overview of various coding languages and also focus on specific areas of interest. Students, teachers, and parents should discuss the best programs for kids based on identified interests. You might also be interested in web design for beginners: real world coding in HTML & CSS.
The world of technologies is known to have a generous and supportive community. Similarly, quality coding programs should have a supportive community where kids can interact freely and share their knowledge with one another. Such a sense of community is a great support and networking system, especially for students who are still struggling to grasp challenging coding concepts. They can ask questions, seek help, and make friends from the platform.
Kids are visual and active learners. Therefore, the coding school should promote active learning of coding concepts to make the learning process effective. This explains why coding puzzles and games are a popular way of teaching kids programming. Quality coding courses should provide opportunities for students to explore with their coding projects and put their few skills into practice.
Best Coding Programs for Kids
Having outlined some of the crucial factors to consider when searching for a coding program for your kid, below are some of the best courses to consider;
Coder Kids coding program offers online and in-person coding for kids of all ages. Kids looking to start their programming journey starts off with a free introduction to Scratch Coding class. Here, kids learn how to open their Scratch account and the basics of this language. They also learn how to write codes in Scratch.
Code.org is currently among the most popular coding website that provides several free coding programs for kids. This intuitive platform packs several relevant coding courses that suit kids of all ages from different parts of the world. It also offers extensive online tutorials of more than 20 hours that are overly beneficial for interested kids.
Scratch is a popular coding program for kids aged from 6 to 16 years developed by MIT. The website has an easy-to-use interface that uses visual codes that are simple to follow. With this, instead of typing codes, students simply drag and drop blocks to create several games and stories. Scratch not only offers programming lessons for kids but also has activities, curriculum, and assessments that teachers can use. You can also check out scratch online overview.
Unlike Scratch, Codecombat.com combines text-based coding with RPG gaming, delivering an immersive and student-centered learning experience through fun games that are easily accessible. The idea behind this learning strategy is to allow students to complete missions, solve puzzles, and other activities by developing sets of commands.
Lightbot is a good choice for parents who want a simple and flexible approach to getting their kids into coding. Unlike other website and browser-based coding programs, Lightbot is an app-based program that suits kids of all ages. The platform was designed by actual programmers, providing assurance that it covers all the necessary coding aspects for kids.
Typically, the app is a puzzle game that aspiring coders should use some coding knowledge to complete. Apart from learning some coding basics, kids also get to learn problem-solving skills by playing this logic game.
Programming is an important skill for kids to succeed in the current and future world. Therefore, you shouldn’t hesitate to introduce your kid to the world of computer science. Kids not only learn to code but also acquire important life skills, such as problem-solving, creativity, and more.