As time passes, it is becoming more and more evident that coding is not only a preserve of the “talented few” but becoming a necessity for all adults and children alike.
Before your brain gets twisted in a knot, take heart in the fact that coding is much, much easier today as opposed to years ago when the then child prodigies like Bill Gates learned coding the hard way.
Present day developers have managed to build tools that help even pre-school children to learn coding.
In this article, we are going to look at the top 5 coding languages that can be taught to kids.
Before getting into these coding languages, let us look at some of the benefits that coding gives to children.
Benefits of Coding for Children
Children who master coding from a very early age develop better problem-solving skills. They become better at analysing situations and their maths skills also improve.
Coding also gives children the confidence to create complete applications on their own which has a host of benefits in all other areas of their lives.
Top 5 Programming Languages for Children
Scratch is a block based free software developed for children between the ages of 8 and 16. It is used to teach kids how to code in a simple, fun and interactive way. They learn to coding logic by using blocks of code that contain pre-written lines of code.
Scratch teaches the logical side of coding without necessarily having to write out the lines of code manually. The idea behind Scratch was to simplify the process of creating animations, designing games, and building interactive stories.
It is so intuitive that even complete beginners can create customised games within a very short space of time.
Blockly was developed by Google and viewed by many in the industry as Google’s response to Scratch. It is essentially a programming language made up of other pre-existing languages. It was designed for kids over 8 years of age who wanted to learn coding on their own using their browsers.
Just like scratch, it uses blocks of codes which the children piece together and then get to experience the results. The Blockly User Interface consists of blocks of code which have different shapes, colours and sizes.
These blocks are arranged in tool boxes. You also get a workspace and trash can.
Blockly is more than a kid’s app though because you can create actual android apps with it. It also allows users to easily switch between languages seamlessly.
Though it has all these features, it still falls short when compared with its biggest competitor, Scratch. This is mainly because there are very limited tutorials online and a smaller user community in comparison to Scratch which has over 15 million registered users.
Nearly everything on the web now uses this popular language. Although it is known mainly for building web-based applications, its uses stretch beyond the web and can be used to program robots, for example.
Lua is a scripting language that is perfect for introducing children to text-based coding. It’s easy to learn, use, and embed into applications. Lua is a free, elegant, powerful, portable, embeddable, and beginner-friendly coding language.
Lua has many advantages which include being easy to install as well as being very light. Lua is ideal for coding IOS and Android applications and one of the most popular games made with Lua is Angry Birds.
Lua also has the advantage of having a large online community and therefore many learning resources.
Python is another text-based programming language that is powerful enough to create computer apps, web apps mobile apps.
This language is responsible for creating a majority of the web applications that we currently use on a day to day basis. Though it is text based, there are game based tutorials available online that make learning python fun and easy.
We at EDUStore Africa provide a number of options as far as getting your children engaged in coding. We provide a comprehensive catalogue of solutions for the African marketplace and are affiliated to leaders in this field globally namely Shape Robotics, Robo Camp as well as Robo Bloq.
If you need solutions for the African marketplace, we are your people. Reach us through our Contact Us page and we will be sure to get back to you.