Why should kids start coding from a young age?
According to STEM education statistics by 2021, 2.4 million STEM jobs will go unfilled. Also, 65% of all new jobs in STEM are in computing, but only 10% of STEM graduates are in computer science. This makes us wonder if coding is hard to learn? Nothing is hard if done with proper planning and in a structured way. The Future will be full of opportunities in coding so why not train our kids for the future. In this blog, we will be discussing why kids should start coding from a Young Age?
Learning to write programs stretches your mind, and helps you think better, creates a way of thinking about things that I think is helpful in all domains.
Bill Gates, Co-Founder of Microsoft
What Age is appropriate to learn to code?
When we talk about learning new skills there are certainly no "one-size-fits-all" solutions. One could learn as early as in one day or else could take a year. There is no particular age defined for learning to code; this depends on the kid's brain development. But how to know if our kid is ready to learn to code or coding excites him? Before moving on let's talk about some scientific studies and check out some facts. According to a report by the Center of developing child Harvard University, Sensory pathways( Vision and hearings) are the first to develop, followed by early language skills and higher cognitive functions.
You can see the image for better understanding, You might be thinking of how knowing this will affect our kids, If we know at what age we should introduce new things to our kids it can help in better brain development. Small things can affect kid's minds so as a parent you should always consider mental health first, Coding is great for opportunities but imposing it on your kids could harm their brain development. At 7 or 8, most kids have sufficiently developed logical and critical thinking skills needed for coding thus we can say this could be an ideal age to start but not to forget the best time is when your kids show excitement and interest in coding.
It's never too late for anything (exceptions are there). Similarly, it's not too late to get benefits from learning to code or learning new skills, but those who start as young children have an upper hand. After all experience matters and with experience comes confidence.
Benefits of Coding
Let us discuss some benefits your kids get when they learn to code:
- Various Career Opportunities - With Evolution, everyone needs to evolve and be versatile to live in this competitive world and Programming is a field that will produce most of the jobs in the coming year, So we should prepare our kids for the future opportunities.
- It can help students to learn perseverance - Perseverance means persistence in doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success. While coding if what they are creating is not working then they tend to analyze the problem and find different solutions to resolve it which helps in the development of perseverance.
- It helps in having fun with Math - Math is a subject which troubles a lot of students maybe because they can't relate maths with real-life examples. Coding helps children in applying math skills in real-life problems which in turn helps kids to make maths fun and creative learning.
- It encourages kids to think outside of the box - Coding helps kids to understand how simple a line of codes can create applications thus encourages them to be more innovative and think out of the box. When kids love what they are doing their mind helps in getting new ideas for getting their work done.
- It prepares kids for skills that are necessary for the future - Coding is not only necessary for getting job opportunities in the future but it helps in the overall development of a child. Many skills like problem-solving, computation thinking, logical power, and many more other skills can be taught using coding and these are some important skills one should perceive for a better future.
Skills Kids Learn When they learn to Code
In this competitive world where we have competition in every field, your kids need to be versatile for better future opportunities, and one field that provides us these versatile skills is Programming.
Let us discuss some skills which we gain while learning to code and how they are useful for different opportunities in the future:
- Problem Solving Skills
To understand how kids learn problem-solving skills while coding let us assume that you are a programmer and you have to solve a problem. You will be taking the following approach which includes:
- Understand the problem.
- Try to find a solution and implement it.
- Try another solution if the last one doesn't work or not optimized one.
What can you notice? How systematically step by step we are solving our problem is how a programmer thinks and if your kids are learning to code in no time they will be following this approach not only during coding but in real-life problems too.
- Computational Thinking
When kids learn how to write code they not only develop cognitive skills but also learn the problem-solving process that’s similar to a computer. After all these machines are the creation of humans so we can learn computational thinking by building them on their own and the first step towards it is learning to code.
- Logical Thinking
Coding includes several logical questions that help young minds to improve their logic and solve problems based on logic. It involves using expressions, selection, iteration, conditional, and other logical statements and sentences.
- Structural Thinking
As the name suggests structural thinking is putting a framework to the unstructured problem. Do you remember jigsaw puzzles? If they are not arranged in a proper structure we get nothing else we get a beautiful picture. These small lessons help kids in understanding how we can divide our problems to solve them in a better way.
- Algorithmic Thinking
The algorithm is a process or set of rules to be followed step by step. whereas algorithmic thinking is the ability to define certain steps for solving any problem. This thinking helps our kids in breaking down the problem and think about the solution step by step.
When we learn new skills we try to implement that in our way similarly when kids learn to code they try to understand the concepts in their way which creates new ideas and sometimes better than existing ones. After all, humans tend to invent new things when they can't do it in a pre-invented way. This aids in inventing creative ideas leading to the development of yet another skill Creativity.
Hence we can conclude that having children learn coding at a young age prepares them for the future. Coding helps children with communication, creativity, math, writing, confidence, and many more which we have discussed above. The main issue parents face is when their kids should start learning to code. We have discussed various points that will guide you in solving this issue. I believe that children are like clay in the potter's hand, give them time and patience to nurture. Coding helps us in improving our overall personality, several skill sets that are provided by it are discussed. Learning to code doesn't mean your kid will be a Tech geek, It means they will be having all the skills which as a human if one possesses helps them in growing. We already know our future will be Tech-oriented so why not prepare your kids for the future?
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