What is Coding For Kids? Ultimate Guide For Parents | iCode

What is Coding For Kids? Ultimate Guide For Parents | iCode

Coding (AKA computer programming) is wildly popular for kids today. Society relies on technology for virtually everything. Entire industries are falling away due to automation. But this isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It’s time to think about how to set your young child up for these new opportunities and success in the future by teaching kids coding and the basics of computer science.

As technological advancements continue to evolve over the decades to come, coding will become a critical skill.

Kids who learn basic coding skills today will have less to fear from artificial intelligence (AI) and automation because they will code the next AI programs instead of being replaced by them.

But what exactly is coding and how can you teach it to your kids? That’s what we’ll cover in this article. 

Coding refers to computer programming. Some people call this “writing code.” 


Computer programs are created from many lines of text and numbers (code). When code is written in the proper order in the appropriate software program, the software can execute whatever command the code represents.


For instance, in a software program that accepts HyperText Markup Language (HTML) writing <br> is like hitting the enter key when typing in a Word document.


This piece of code is called a tag and that tag tells the computer software to break a line. Take a look at the following example.


If you enter this:

In this Hello! <br><br> My name is John.


The computer program will output this:

My name is John.

As you can see, there is now a double space between the first and second lines of text.

This is an example of very basic coding instruction. 

There is a lot more to computer coding than tags, and your kids can learn numerous programming languages like CSS, Javascript, Python, and more.

Coding can be a challenging subject, but highly rewarding and the benefits of learning to code are endless.

Why is Coding for Kids Important?

Most people today don’t understand coding basics. 

This is largely because many computer systems were preprogrammed to make life easy for the person using the software.

Instead of learning to code, most people simply click a button or drag something onto the screen to get the result they want. They don’t need to know how to code to use the program.

But somebody had to learn to code so they could create the software in the first place, and that’s where your young child comes in. 

When your child learns and understands coding concepts, they gain a valuable skill that can benefit them for the rest of their life. Coding is a skill that provides a multitude of opportunities in the job market.

In fact, coding is likely to become the most critical skill in the next few decades, and those who learn it now will be best positioned to take advantage of the coming technological landscape. 

How to Introduce Kids to Coding

Okay, so you know coding is good for kids, but how do you actually explain it to them so they understand what it is?

A couple of ways you might try include:

  1. Talking about how their favorite video game was created. How were the graphics designed? What makes the character move on the screen when they push the toggle forward? When your child shows curiosity, you can dive deeper into how computer coding was used at every stage of development to bring their game to life.
  2. Consider getting your kid involved with a basic online coding game. Look for coding activities for kids , like games that give them simple lines of code to write and then execute those lines of code into basic programs. Once a child sees the possibilities for what they can create using code, they’ll be hooked!

There are many ways to introduce kids to computer coding. If all else fails, just talk with them about it. Show them videos on your computer. Explore different possibilities and bring up the subject regularly. The more they’re presented with these ideas, the more their interest will grow. 

What Can Kids Use Coding For?

Let’s say your kid takes up an interest in coding. What can they actually do with it?

As mentioned above, video games and computer programs are built on code. 

Since this is true of virtually every computer program on the planet, it means your kid can use coding to position themselves for success.

Once they know how to code, they have a lifelong skill. It’s a skill that can be used to create products and services or even businesses and sometimes entire business industries. 

In the employment sector, coders are paid very well. 

Good coders can take up positions with companies like Google, Microsoft, and Amazon and regularly earn salaries upwards of six figures per year.

As entrepreneurs, some coders have become incredibly wealthy by creating simple apps that were sold for hundreds of millions or even billions of dollars.

Look at the recent purchase of Figma (a mockup app) by Adobe for $20 billion…! 

Five Skills Kids Can Learn from Coding

Beyond the reasons explained above, there are many reasons why kids should learn to code. Let’s look specifically at the skills your kid stands to gain.

 1. Coding Stimulates Creativity & Problem-Solving

At a glance, coding doesn’t seem like a creative skill for kids. After all, you simply input code, and something happens as a result.

The thing is, every problem has a unique solution, and when you need a unique solution, you have to get creative with your problem solving skills.

In this way, coding stimulates creativity and problem-solving skills by helping kids idealize creative solutions for unconventional scenarios.

 2. Coding Facilitates Understanding of the World

Getting  your kid to understand how the world works can be daunting. Every parent tries to explain life, but how do you do it in a way they’ll understand?

Kids, like everyone, create meaning through comparisons. When they learn to code, they begin to understand the if/then nature of the world. 

If you type X code then Y happens on the screen.

Now let’s translate this into something a kid can understand…

If you learn to code, then you will have the skills to better understand how things work and solve complex puzzles. You can use these skills to create the next amazing video game that takes the world by storm.

 3. Coding Sharpens Mathematical Skills

Coding software involves basic and advanced math skills. Sometimes a computer programming problem is as simple as 1 + 1 = 2. Other times problems are more complicated and require outside-of-the-box thinking.

For example, what kind of math might be performed to display a message one year from an employee’s first anniversary with a company?

There are multiple ways to solve this problem, and virtually all of them involve some amount of math coded into the software program.

As your child learns to code, they will naturally pick up critical and logical thinking skills that help them with their math skills, coding, and beyond.


 4. Coding Improves Concentration and Focus

Concentration and focus are lacking for a lot of people these days. Teaching kids coding offers a valuable path to improving both of these skill areas.

To solve coding games and challenges, your child will need to develop the patience to concentrate and remain focused on the task at hand.

The more they practice and the more experienced they become with coding, the more their concentration and focus will improve.

It’s a natural outcome of problem-solving.

Those who stick with it long enough learn to replace frustration with concentration so they can get the outcome they want.


 5. Coding Helps Build Resilience & Confidence

Similar to concentration, children develop resilience and confidence as they work through difficult coding concepts and scenarios.

At first, many children aren’t sure they’ll ever be able to code anything. 

As they gain experience and knowledge, and as they develop problem solving skills, a certain confidence begins to rise up inside of them.

After a few successes, they realize that they can overcome many difficult challenges with practice and patience and new levels of resilience begin to grow.

What is a Coding Class for Kids?

Now that you have an idea of the benefits of teaching kids coding, let’s talk about how you can kick-start their learning.

From coding games to interactive stories, some parents teach their kids from their own knowledge. The challenge with that approach is that you need to know how to code.

Since most people don’t know how to code and are unfamiliar with certain programming concepts, a more practical option is usually to enroll your child in a coding class for kids.

But what does that even look like?

A coding class for kids is kind of like taking your child to baseball or tumbling practice after school. It’s a classroom environment in a physical location where your child gets hands-on experience with coding under the guidance of a qualified instructor.

One benefit of learning in a classroom setting is that your young child can avoid distractions at home that might otherwise hold them up in their learning. This helps them learn faster and become more effective as a coder in the shortest time possible.

How to Explain Coding Classes for Kids

Once you’ve explained the basic concept of coding to your child and they’ve shown interest, now it’s time to expand on your talking points.

Casually bring up coding classes coding camps  or trying a coding activity. Consider mentioning that you saw one and thought they might like to know about it.

When they ask what’s involved, that’s your chance to share the benefits of learning a coding language or two.

Be sure to focus on key highlights, such as the opportunity to learn with other kids, and the kinds of software programs and interactive stories they might create and develop on their own.

Remember to relate the coding class to your child’s world rather than your own. 

They’ll care about things like building video games or programming fun apps and less about the career opportunities they might enjoy by the time they’re 30!

Ultimately, you don’t want to be pushy. Just bring up the topic and see where the conversation goes. When they show an interest, share more details.

How to Pick Coding Classes for Kids

All right. Your child is interested in coding and wants to join a coding class. How do you find the right coding class for your kid?

Here are some things to look for in a coding class:

What to Look for in a Coding Class for Kids

1. Do they have a physical location?

2. How long have they been in business?

3. Do they have experienced instructors?

4. What learning formats are available for your child?

5.Do they have systems for rewarding achievement?

6. Does the program grow with your child?

7. Do they have a lot of positive reviews?

If possible, show up in person. Take a tour. Get a feel for the instructors and the kinds of programs offered. 

Ask questions of the staff and make sure you feel comfortable with them before you enroll your child in their program.

Enrolling Your Kids in Coding Lessons

When you decide to enroll your child in a coding class, you’ll first need to find a school or business that has coding lessons in your area. 

iCode Schools  specifically teach kids coding, robotics, and other applications in a classroom environment.

iCode has a history of successful programs provided by experienced instructors who are not only knowledgeable but are trained in teaching kids coding.

With iCode, your child will learn alongside peers as they work through valuable hands-on coding experiences that give them real-world skills.

Importantly, iCode uses a leveling system to track each child’s progress and ensures they’re learning coding at a level that suits them personally. At the end of the day, our goal is to make the experience of computer coding fun and educational.

If that sounds like the right computer science program for your child, the next step is to visit iCode and to learn more about their coding school and schedule a FREE trial coding lesson. And who knows? Taking a coding class might inspire your child to become the next genius app inventor. Contact us to learn more. 

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