Why Coding is Important for Early Childhood
When it comes to computer programming, early childhood is the time to start. If you don’t know how to code, you would think that it’s far too complex to introduce to young kids, but starting with the basics as young as age 3 is the perfect way to get kids excited about coding for years to come.
In The STEM Shift: A Guide for School Leaders, Ann Meyers and Jill Berkowicz write, “Children are not just learning to code, they are coding to learn.” We pulled from their STEM-focused pedagogical approach in sharing the ways that learning how to code does indeed make children better learners.
What is coding?
According to BitDegree, coding is defined as “the basic act of writing – in a programming language – a script that a computer can understand.” In the simplest terms, coding is a process for communicating with a computer. By using a language that the computer understands, humans can manipulate computers into performing functions. Combining basic building blocks of coding helps us create computer software, applications, websites and video games.
Why should the child in your life learn how to code?
- Coding is like learning another language
Language is the foundation of communication. Once a toddler starts learning how to talk, a whole range of expression is available to them. Exposing children to a second and third language while they are young means they will start absorbing it like a sponge. Coding is a language, too. It is full of symbols that indicate meaning and directions, just like verbal languages.
- Coding fosters creativity
Children are creative by nature. Exposing children to coding toys allows them to flex their creativity in new ways. Botzees Classic, for example, is a coding toy that allows kids to build any sort of robot they want. If kids can spend their childhoods in open, creative environments, they will be much more likely to maintain that level of creativity as they enter adulthood.
- Coding helps children build math skills
Children will build their math skills as they learn to code without even noticing. Playing with a coding toy will just feel like fun. They won’t even notice that they are using logic and calculation skills or analyzing data. They’ll just be solving problems and enjoying the outcomes.
- Coding improves academic performance in writing
Believe it or not, coding can improve writing skills, too. Learning to code is learning to think, and clear writing happens as a result of clear thinking.
- Coding helps children become confident problem solvers
Part of nearly every coding experience is running into problems and learning how to move forward. Kids need this skill in school, and they need it in life, too.
- Coding prepares children for a computer-based future
Our modern world is so often found lacking a workforce that is properly trained for its growing needs. And technology is becoming more and more essential to our daily lives. By teaching kids how to code while they are young, they will be familiar with the processes as they move into a technologically driven future.
- Coding challenges kids and builds persistence and resilience
Ever gotten stuck on a problem and wanted to give up? Us, too. It’s never easy to keep pushing when it seems like there is no way forward, but the satisfaction you’ll experience when you finally overcome whatever challenge you are facing is a great feeling. Help the kids in your life build strength and resilience by introducing them to coding. They will encounter so many little challenges—and they will overcome most of them—that they will become near experts in persistence. They will be unstoppable!
How can you help the children in your life learn how to code?
Starting young children with coding toys is one of the best ways to introduce them to coding. Why? It all feels like play! Check out the rest of the Botzees site to find a coding toy that is the perfect fit for the child in your life.