Kids come into the world bright eyed and ready to learn, and as parents, teachers and a society at large, it is our responsibility to impart upon them all the skills and knowledge that they will need to learn to flourish and better humanity. We teach them right from wrong, how to be creative thinkers and problem solvers, how to communicate and work together in a world that can at times seem divisive. Language, religion, race, and gender among so many other things can sometimes serve as hurdles to unity; but as we are propelled into this incredible future with technology so integrally woven into the daily fabric of our lives, it is becoming clearer that these hurdles will be gradually lowered and teaching kids to code can only help serve that purpose. The language of programming is becoming a truly universal language. This article briefly touches on a few of the many benefits of teaching kids to code.
1. Coding teaches kids to think
“I think everybody in this country should learn how to program a computer because it teaches you how to think.”
— STEVE JOBS, THE LOST INTERVIEW
It’s no secret that countries that have educational systems that don’t put on emphasis on science and math programs are placing their children at a distinct disadvantage. In an increasingly competitive world, it is important that we give our children every advantage. And as we rely more and more technology, doesn’t it just make sense that we should be raised understanding how it works, and not get lost behind the veil of “magic”?
2. Coding teaches kids to be creative and more expressive
“Every student deserves the opportunity to learn computer programming. Coding can unlock creativity and open doors for an entire generation of American students. We need more coders — not just in the tech industry, but in every industry.”
Mark Pincus — CEO and Founder, Zynga
Creativity isn’t some hippie trait that is reserved for “artist types”. It’s something innate that we were all born with. If you have any doubt of that, watch for how long and in how many ways a baby can entertain themselves with a cardboard box or plastic bottle. Even for the people who seemingly have everything, the inner drive to create and imagine still exists. Teaching kids to code is like giving them a cardboard box on steroids. It’s giving them tools to actually create the things they can imagine.
3. Coding teaches kids about the world
Our world is an increasingly technological one. If kids can understand the language behind the technology, it will encourage them to interact with technology that would otherwise be taken for granted, differently. Being fluent in the language, kids will be able understand how things work and encourage them to experiment. And experimentation leads to discovery and progress.
4. Coding is fun and builds confidence
This goes back to point 2. Even though coding is logic based, it allows for enormous amounts of creativity. A child who knows how to code, will inevitably be a well-rounded one and programming allows him to use both sides of his brain simultaneously.
5. Coding prepares kids for the future and gives them an advantage
The global job market is definitely not what it once was, but one of the few fields where the numbers of jobs are growing and very stable is in technology. Kids with the ability to code will have an automatic edge over those who can’t when applying to college, and eventually jobs. It’s an education that’s a solid investment for their future.
6. Coding teaches teamwork
Programming is collaborative in nature — most programming today is accomplished in teams. Learning to work well with others consequently improves a child’s emotional and social intelligence and communication skills all while giving them a boost of confidence.
7. The demand for developers is growing exponentially
According to kodable’s infographic , over the next 10 years, there will be 1.4 million programming jobs to fill and with only 400,000 computer science graduates, that leaves a whopping 1 million empty jobs!
8. The earlier they learn, the better
Just like any other language, the earlier kids start to learn, the better.
If you’re not convinced after reading these reasons that your child should learn to code, we’ll leave you with this thought — provoking quote from Reddit CEO, Yishan Wong,
“One hundred years ago, people were faced with the choice of learning to read or remaining illiterate laborers who would be left behind as have-nots in a rapidly modernizing world. In the coming century, being able to command a world that will be thoroughly computerized will set apart those who can live successfully in the future from those who will be utterly left behind.”
Don’t let your child get left behind.