A microcomputer sounds like some fancy technological miniature, but it’s exactly as the name implies – a small scale computer. Many modern notebook laptops, such as the Chromebook, fall into this category. They run on a microprocessor and use a single circuit board to perform.
With technology taking up so much of the modern world, it’s become apparent that our children need to learn how to properly use these devices. As our future generation of teachers, doctors, and leaders, having a basic understanding of computers and how they work is essential.
One of the ways schools and extracurricular science programs have been incorporating computer learning children’s curriculum is through microcomputers. Whether set up in classrooms, learning centers, or day camps – microcomputers make an impact on tech learning.
If you’re wondering what makes microcomputers so important, and whether your child should learn to use them, you’re not alone. At iCode, we get lots of questions regarding the use of technology education. Here’s what you, as a parent or educator, need to know.
Preparation for the Future
Technology has taken a front seat in our lives and it isn’t slowing down anytime soon. From your self-cleaning oven to Siri on your iPhone, there’s technology all around us. One of the things we believe strongly at iCode is, it’s not only important to know how to use technology but to understand how it works. We encourage children to ask questions and understand what’s going on inside a computer, not only outside a computer. Working with microcomputers gives children the basics to understand a variety of other devices. This sets them up for success in life, whether they become a veterinarian or an engineer.
Recently, an educational project in Denmark, provided 65,000 microcomputers to children aged 10-11. The aim of the project was to teach the children a new language. The language of technology. Each microcomputer had the ability to run just like your laptop might at home. Using code, the children were tasked with the job of getting the microcomputers to function. Throughout the assignment, children would learn code, the internal components of a microcomputer, and the importance of technology in everyday life.
Self-Reliance and Self-Esteem
It’s well-documented that children have an easier time adopting a new language than adults do. Learning code, procedural programming and circuit board development are no harder than learning music or French. Therefore, it’s not an unrealistic goal to set for a child. Setting learning and outcome goals for children helps them build real-life skills. Not only for positions in technology-based jobs, but also for life outside the classroom and workspace.
Working with microcomputers explores the multifaceted world of science and technology. As your child develops the skills necessary to create code, modify programs, and even build a circuit board from the bottom up, he or she also learns the skills necessary to feel confident in their work and themselves. Self-reliance and self-esteem are two very special outcomes of the STEAM programs, we at iCode use to increase the role of science, technology, engineering, art and math into the lives of children. We see the confidence these programs build, the smiles on the faces of students as they achieve the desired outcome, and the dawning of understanding that they CAN do it.
Independent Thinking with Microcomputers
There are many areas of school and extracurriculars which improve social skills and teamwork. While working with microcomputers can foster relationships in STEAM programs, the real skillset your child will gain from this experience is independence and independent thinking. With a basic understanding of code and computer components, your child can put their knowledge to work independently and create or fix something without assistance from others. This is a massive accomplishment in the world of a child.
Independent thinking is a life skill that we use every day. Not only at work or in school, but in regular everyday activities like grocery shopping, banking, and even choosing which path to take on a bike ride.
Learn More About Microcomputers
Programs with microcomputers are becoming more abundant. If you’re curious about how these programs work and what they teach, we encourage you to visit us online. Through a variety of afterschool programs, summer camps, and day courses, iCode school works with children to deliver the many benefits of a STEAM education. We’re confident in what these programs offer children and their future aspirations. Understanding how things work is the first step to overcoming related fears and anxieties. Contact us today for more information.