Teach Kids to Code and Secure Their Future
Children today are raised in a world surrounded by technology. Computers, tablets, and smartphones are part of their daily lives since birth, and technology will likely play a prominent role in their future regardless of their chosen career path. And that will make a knowledge of coding even more important.
But many kids don’t have the opportunity to learn much about the language of computers. That means they might be left behind, especially as other parts of the world embrace the idea.
The Language of Tomorrow
Software applications are part of our everyday existence, and that means the language used to create them is only more important. It is also a language that is somewhat universal, as programming languages are used worldwide. This means code has the ability to make our vast world feel smaller as we use it to find common ground.
Hands-On with Fast Feedback
Learning to code is a hands-on experience. While certain key aspects of a language can be introduced in textbooks, the true learning experience happens when children have the opportunity to use what they know to create simple programs.
Additionally, they receive the benefits of fast feedback when their code is executed. In most cases, a kid will know if mere moments if their code contains errors. This means they can immediately reexamine what was entered to find their own mistakes. There is no need to wait for a teacher to check over their work to see if the code is accurate as they can simply execute what is there and see the results themselves.
A New Way of Thinking
Learning how to code isn’t about turning every child into a developer, though it could help manage shortchanges in information technology professions. Instead, by bringing coding into the standard educational paradigm, children can be introduced to a new way of thinking.
Software engineers are adept at problem-solving and rely heavily on mathematics and logic; a method referred to as computational thinking. It provides children with a new set of skills for working their way through the world and for managing any problems they may face along the way.
Increase Interest in STEM
Allowing technology to be a part of education instead of just a tool can help students develop a higher level of interest in STEM subjects early on. By increasing interest, children are more likely to focus their educational efforts on the skills required to work in these areas and can help raise the number of people who eventually pursue these fields as careers.
Additionally, early introduction to coding in all schools can increase the amount of diversity in the corresponding workforces in the future. Diversity is celebrated for increasing creativity and innovation within work groups, but many minorities turn away from careers in STEM fields like IT due to the current lack of diversity, as well as suitable role models and educational support.
Teaching all kids coding helps lower some of the barriers associated with unconscious bias around specific fields, and helps those who may have originally been interested, but lacked true exposure to the skills, explore their options more fully.
Coding as a Stepping Stone
It is important to note that the ability to write code doesn’t guarantee a full understanding of computer science or technology. Instead, it works as an accessible stepping stone to bolster interest and encourage new ways of thinking. Will some students choose to pursue programming as a career? Sure, but many will not. However, that doesn’t mean the experience isn’t valuable to everyone along the way.