It is thought that by Year 8 it is too late to encourage children to learn programming and coding skills as secondary is well under way and many students will have already decided whether programming is right for them or not.
Learning coding is said to enhance creativity, thinking and decision making skills. Yet coding is also the new global language – as digital and computing devices outnumber humans, learning to talk to these devices is ever more important.
There are a number of great websites out there to engage children and teach them the necessary skills; Scratch being one of them.
The Khan Academy has plenty of useful tutorials for children too.
Local courses for 9-11 year olds can be found via Code Club
A site particularly useful for engaging girls is Roberta – Learning with Robots
And don’t think your child is too young either. Primo Toys have just this week launched their kickstarter campaign to get the Montessori approved, and LOGO Turtle inspired, Cubetto out to market. It is geared for children 3 to 6 years old and is marketed as a playful programming language you can touch. The Cubetto, a wooden robot, is designed to teach children how to code without the use of screens. Their Kickstarter campaign is open until Thursday April 7th so there’s still a little time to support this great venture and get rewarded in return.
More detailed information on Programming for Primaries Awareness Day can be found via the ComputerXplorers website