As I have been listening and talking to advocates of STEAM education, I have come to believe that we need to engage young people in science, technology, engineering, art, and math as early as 3rd or 4th grade. I had the opportunity to start hacking at programming using GW-BASIC when I was six or seven years old. I am forever thankful for my Dad for many things. I, however, am especially thankful that he taught me to start hacking on computers so early. It was a great bonding experience for both of us to work on projects and helped launch my career that helps me support my family.
I have been thinking about the idea of creating a learning resource that would support teaching kids and teens how to code. So…. what can kids learn about computer programming? What is age appropriate? What kinds of programs can a student in middle school create? What kinds of software can high school students make?
I wanted to share a few resources and perspectives that I collected.
1. Teach U.S. kids to write computer code : Douglas Rushkoff, digital literacy advocate for Codecademy.com and contributor for CNN, shares 10 reasons to teach young people how to program. As we learn human language, we learn to speak, read, and write. As our future generation uses technology more, it becomes more important for them to know how to make software… They can’t just be consumers.
2. TEDxManhattanBeach – Thomas Suarez – iPhone Application Developer
3. Teaching Kids to Program: This post provides a nice collection of tools that help teach programming to kids. I am very interested in how to teach programming in an age appropriate way. I appreciated the author’s recommendations about waiting to teach kids until age 7.
4. So – you want to Teach your Kids Computer Programming? In this post, I appreciated that the author ordered technology recommendations. Early recommendations are great for young kids. Technology mentioned later in the post are great for older students.
5. 36 Resources To Help You Teach Kids Programming – Nice index of tools and resources