As per the experts, in the upcoming 20 years, most of the jobs will be based on Computational Thinking and Algorithmic Intelligence (CTAI), and coding is the foundational skill for CTAI. So, why not introduce your kids to some primary programming language to instill a foundation in them that they can build their career upon. Even if your kids don’t choose to pursue a career in programming, learning the basics of coding makes them more cognitive and an out-of-the-box thinker. As Steve Jobs once said, “Everyone should learn to code because it teaches you how to think.”
But the question is, where can one start? What are some of the introductory languages that kids can get started with? And how does one get their kids to approach such languages?
In this article, we will discuss the top three languages that are best suitable for kids because of their comprehensibility and ease of understanding.
Scratch is a block-based programming language that caters primarily to children. It offers a visual approach to programming interactive stories, games, and animations. Scratch insinuates kids to employ logic, creativity, and reasoning while working on coding.
The best thing about Scratch is that it is an introductory approach to teaching your kids coding. Learning from Scratch does not require one to be an expert in programming. Only a sense of enthusiasm and curiosity can make your kids love this programming language. Scratch is easy to understand and code with, thanks to its visual interface. Moreover, it lays a strong foundation and interest in programming and coding so your kids stay curious about what else they can achieve with computer language.
When kids are well-versed in Scratch, the next programming language to introduce to them is Python. Not unlike Scratch, Python is easy to understand, thanks to its use of simple syntaxes. Where most programming languages use complex combinations of symbols and commands, Python relies on straightforward commands.
The language helps kids get familiar with all the necessary programming characteristics while making coding easy and simple. Therefore, when kids have had their hands on Python, they can transition to other, more complex languages without much difficulty. A fun fact about Python is that the world’s biggest video sharing platform, YouTube, uses the language for most of its framework. That proves that Python remains an integral programming language to learn for anyone wanting to become a good coder.
HTML and CSS are foundational languages of the web. HTML stands for Hypertext Markup Language, and CSS stands for Cascading Style Sheets. While the former is used to design webpages, the latter is used to define the presentation of a document on the webpage.
Teaching kids HTML and CSS gets them familiar with the basic text-based syntax, using which they can create basic web pages of their own. Like Scratch and Python, HTML/CSS teaches the foundational skills for developing websites, which can later be advanced with Java and PHP.
Moreover, having an idea about HTML and CSS also gives the kids the freedom to create their own website and not be dependent on others to do it for them. Both languages are easy to understand and can be mastered by spending a few hours every day on them.
There are many programming languages out there, some of them difficult, while some are easier to understand. Nevertheless, there must be a starting point for everything, and languages like Scratch, Python, and HTML/CSS serve to be that. They lay the foundation on which one can build their entire programming career. Whether you are looking for your kids to learn programming and code games or animation or simply want them to have an idea of computer languages, make sure you start with the basics.