Any child who is even seven years old can start coding—with simple block programming, where he/she drags and drops blocks to make the logic work
By Sneha Priya
Coding, the ‘new literacy’, has gained a significant popularity as a basic skill in today’s world. The Generation Z—being a generation born in the age of the internet—has shown greater traits of digital fluency, and has increasingly shown interest in coding and dozens of programs like #Codelikeaqueen, #Hourofcode, #Codingsummercamp, etc.
Coding has become a means to not only provide practical technological skills, but it also helps students develop problem-solving skills and logic, inspires them to analyse, question, and think objectively. It helps the Gen Z build their career in a vast array of opportunities, like web design, software development, information science, and so on. Not only that, coding is also relevant for building computational thinking skills for careers as diverse as biology and music. Computational thinking is the skill to tackle large, unmanageable problems by breaking them down into smaller, more manageable problems.
To reap the benefits mentioned above, it is important how coding is taught to a child. If it is taught theoretically with definitions and syntax, etc, it will only add on to a kid’s already heavy academics. It should be taught in a more practical way, possibly in an interactive manner, making it interesting for the children and also easy for them to imagine and become creative.
Next comes the question of when a child should start his/her coding journey and what coding language should he/she learn? Any child who is even seven years old can start coding—with simple block programming, where he/she drags and drops blocks to make the logic work. The basic idea here is to introduce the concept of coding to young minds who can easily adapt and start thinking logically to solve problems using their creativity. Such a ‘thinking skill’ can go a long way in their development.
Coding skills are like communication skills. Once you master these, the coding language will not matter and one can quickly adapt to whatever frameworks or languages that become a trend in the future.
According to a study conducted by SP Robotic Works, gamification of the learning process using hardware kits that provides a feel of video games has made STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) education fun for children. Seeing a coding process’s outcome in a physical kit or robot which moves according to the commands a child has coded, makes it even more fun and interesting for them.
The author is co-founder of SP Robotic Works