The most commonly
for teaching kids is by linking play and learning
together. Children who are happy tend to learn faster and begin to associate
fun and learning at a very early age. Visual programming languages such as Scratch have been directly
developed for kids between the ages of 5 and up have shown to be hugely
beneficial to their learning and continued interest in programming.
“Children learn best
when they are given appropriate responsibility, allowed to make errors,
decisions and choices, and respected as autonomous learners” – Tina Bruce
It is often best to
disregard computer science jargon when teaching a child instead and head right
into the core concepts of programming – children will likely gravitate towards
the parts they find interesting and learn by themselves.
“In today’s world where the
average attention span is constantly getting shorter we need to find ways to
incentivize learning for kids and make it fun” – John Shindler, (Transformative
classroom management, 2009)
Despite its intellectual reputation,
programming is a hands-on skill that requires practice to truly understand.
When teaching kids, it is important that you let the kids ‘drive’ so that they
are directly engaging with the code, solving problems independently and reaping
the rewards of the results.
On the non-software side of
things – Lego and other problem solving puzzle games have shown to be useful in
developing kids interest in programming from an early age. Such activities
present challenges in a fun and interesting way, promoting a positive
association between problem-solving and fun.