Coding time flies when you’re having fun

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Everything should be kept as simple as possible, but no simpler.

Teaching kids is a hard work. By teaching I mean not lecturing, but real, efficient and full of fun explaining how things work. I still remember one of my first computer languages – LOGO. This was Atari time and we have learned principles of programming by learning how turtle works. It was fun, but at the same time, it had lots of limitations.

First of all, if you want to write LOGO code you have to know how to write. You have to type on the keyboard, and you have to pay lots of attention to syntax. And, to be honest, LOGO code isn’t that sexy.

You can “penup”, you can “pendown” and move around. Of course you can do a lot with LOGO, but let’s face it, having fun with LOGO requires lots of work to be done.

The limits of my language means the limits of my world.

If you want to teach kids computer programming, you should start with something that allows expressing relatively complex ideas using simple language. In my opinion, at the time of writing, Scratch is exactly this kind of language.

Power of Scratch lays in the simplicity of code building mixed with quick reward. You can make objects move on the screen with just few clicks. Let’s play small quiz – just to show a sample.

Quiz time: What can you do, using following elements

Well, you can do pretty much. You can develop simple game and this way let the kids understand basics of programming.

Teaching coding is a hard task. If you want to avoid typical “Hello world” approach while delivering lectures to kids, you should become familiar with Scratch. It pays off.

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