What is Coding?
Coding is the method of giving a computer instructions to perform a specific task. You may also hear coding referred to as software programming or computer programming.
Code lays the groundwork for our world's technology, from microprocessors in everyday items like refrigerators and water heaters to sophisticated programs that run our cars and buildings.
Learning to code has become an essential element of a child's education and a great way for them to express their creativity and imagination.
Table of Contents
Here's what we cover in this article. If you see what you're looking for, just click on the link to go directly to that section.
- What is coding for kids?
- Why should kids learn to code?
- Is it hard for kids to learn code?
- How do kids learn to code?
- What are the best programming languages for kids?
- Kids can learn to code apps and games
- Learning to code online
- Where can my child learn to code with an instructor?
- Can my child learn code with an instructor online?
- What offline resources can help my child learn to code?
- My child is more artistic. What can coding do for them?
- How about learning to code based on my child's interests?
- How can learning to code benefit my child?
- Do any coding companies have a curriculum for high school students?
What is coding for kids?
Learning to code is a great opportunity for children of all ages to develop their problem-solving and critical thinking skills, while building the necessary focus and organization to see projects through to completion.
Coding usually begins with drag-and-drop visual programming in which children connect blocks together to make programs. Visual programming teaches the fundamental concepts without typing or syntax by placing the focus on the logic behind the code.
From online coding courses and games to offline learning, from in-person coding instruction to live online tutoring, there are endless coding resources available.
The best coding platforms and programs give children of all ages and experience levels the ability to code while making the process fun and engaging.
Why should kids learn to code?
Technology is prevalent in virtually every aspect of our daily lives and has revolutionized today's world – think self-driving cars, robot-assisted surgery, social media, online banking, environmental conservation, and more. Understanding how to code has become an essential skill to compete in school and in the workforce.
Coding empowers children of all ages to become makers of technology by tapping into their ability to bring their imagination to life.
Kids and teens who code excel at school in math and science, even reading, while developing a skill that will prepare them for future job opportunities.
Is it hard for kids to learn code?
With so many great services available, learning to code has never been easier! For example, Scratch and Tynker provide innovative visual coding languages that make coding fun.
Tynker's award-winning platform captivates young coders because its story-driven strategy motivates them to learn more and more coding concepts to find out what happens next and complete the activity.
How do kids learn to code?
Kids of all ages – from kindergarten through high-school – can learn to code in many different ways. The same fundamental concepts such as sequencing, abstraction, repetition, conditional statements, loops, and functions can be introduced to kids of any age or experience level.
The range of coding education solutions spans far and wide! There are apps, websites, camps, live online classes, and personal tutors, so it's important to choose the method that works best for your child.
Websites like Scratch have development environments, allowing kids to make amazing creations by learning from the community.
Kids who'd like more guidance can benefit from the structured and scaffolded coding curriculum offered by Tynker and Code.org. Those who prefer to learn with a tutor can learn to code at an after-school program at school, a summer camp, or live online. Many top programs offer on-demand, self-paced courses and live online classes and tutoring.Learning to code with Tynker is Fun and Easy!
Explore our Award-Winning Coding Courses
What are the best programming languages for kids?
There are many popular programming languages available to kids. Your child can select one based on their age and experience level. Visual programming languages are a great place to start!
Kids can learn to code apps and games
These days there's an app for everything — including coding for kids — catering to both pre-readers and teenagers. Apps offer coding adventures and games to younger kids, as well as providing the opportunity for older kids to build their own apps and games.
Picture-based block coding apps (Ages 5-7)
- Play coding games and challenges or build simple apps in Tynker Junior and ScratchJr.
Text-based block coding apps (Ages 8-11)
- Download Hopscotch or Tynker from the app store and learn to code by creating apps, games, and projects with text-based coding blocks.
Can my child learn code with an instructor online?
Again, Tynker's sister company, BYJU'S FutureSchool, offers live online coding classes that will accelerate your child's progress from a beginner to an advanced level coder.
My child is more artistic. What can coding do for them?
With Scratch, your child can create animations, and they can use Code.org for drawing projects.
Whether they're interested in art, animation, character creation, story-telling, or even music, Tynker has powerful creativity tools:
- The Animation Tool: Does your child love writing stories and drawing characters? Well, now they can make their projects even better by creating their own animated artwork.
- The Pen Blocks: Did you know that you can use Tynker to create colorful, original drawings with just a handful of code blocks using Tynker's Pen.
- The Sound Blocks: Play music with code! Add custom sound effects, too. Tynker's brand new music tool supports MIDI and MP3. Choose from over 100 new instruments with slick new interface keys.
How about learning to code based on my child's interests?
- Minecraft - Training Day: Create your own Minecraft skins, items, blocks, mobs, and more
- Creative Coding: Discover programming through art, animation, music and game design.
Do any coding companies have a curriculum for high school students?
Code.org has a year-long course in Computer Science Principles that introduces students to the foundational concepts of computer science and challenges them to explore how computing and technology can impact the world.
Tynker has courses that align with subject standards like CCSS-ELA, CCSS-Math, NGSS and CS standards such as CSTA, ISTE, CA CS, UK National Curriculum, and several state-level standards like TEKS.
Additionally, Tynker's AP courses align with AP Curriculum Framework Standards: AP Computer Science Principles Curriculum Framework 2020-2021 and AP Computer Science A Course and Exam Description, Effective 2020.
Tynker's AP Courses:
*Tynker survey conducted in September 2021
Code lays the groundwork for our world's technology, from microprocessors in everyday items like refrigerators and water heaters to sophisticated programs that run our cars and buildings. Learning to code has become an essential element of a child's education and a great way for them to express their creativity and imagination.
How does coding work?At the hardware level, computers understand one language, called machine language. This is the set of instructions supported by the computer's processor hardware and is specific to each type of processor. This object code language is numeric in nature and expressed in binary, which is a numeric coding made up of only 1s and 0s. It is very tedious to program in binary, so higher level languages were created to make it easier to create programs.
In a higher level language, you use syntax that is easier to understand to express what you want the computer to do. It is the job of the higher level language to translate those written instructions into binary object code for the computer to execute. In fact, when a program file is created by a higher level language it will contain only the binary instructions for the computer, not your source code.
What is Coding Used For?Coding creates a set of instructions for computers to follow. These instructions determine what actions a computer can and cannot take. You've seen the impact of coding in your life with everyday high-tech products, like using your smartphone to shop from the comfort of your couch or your tablet to stream your favorite new television show. Or, perhaps you do all your banking online.
Some people still think of coding as limited to NASA's Space missions, like the Moon landing or even NASA's recent rover expedition to Mars, where coding and robotics were essential. But, there's a lot of hard, exciting, and imaginative work going into new technology from coders all around the world, transforming fields you wouldn't normally expect.
What are the Careers in Coding?We're living during a high-tech revolution, witnessing life-changing advancements in medicine, environmental conservation, and much more. At the core of all these fantastic projects and discoveries is code.
Coding jobs are in demand, and the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects that computer and information technology employment will grow 13% between 2020 and 2030, which is faster than the average projected growth rate across all occupations (8%).
It's almost impossible to discuss industries or companies that don't have coding careers. Careers include web developer, software developer, game designer, database administrator, network systems administrator, data scientist, product manager, and app developer…and that are just a few of the amazing and high-paying jobs that come with knowing how to code. Coders also earn high salaries and can work remotely very efficiently.
Is there a difference between coding and programming?Coding is a part of programming that deals with writing codes that a machine can understand. Programming is a process that creates programs that involve the ratification of codes. Coding requires basic knowledge of programming skills without any software tools.