Programming is becoming an increasingly useful skill in today’s society. As we continue to rely more and more on software and digital technology, knowing how to code is also more and more valuable. That’s why many parents are looking for ways to introduce their children to programming. You might find it difficult to know where to begin, with so many different kids’ coding languages and platforms available. In this blog post, we explore how children can progress through different programming languages to realise their potential as proficient coders and creators of digital technology.
Everyone needs to start somewhere, and one great option for children aged 5–7 is ScratchJr (Scratch Junior), a visual programming language with drag-and-drop blocks for creating simple programs. ScratchJr is available for free on Android and iOS mobile devices. It’s great for introducing young children to the basics of programming, and they can use it to create interactive stories and games.
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Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.
Have an amazing project to share? The Electronics Show and Tell is every Wednesday at 7pm ET! To join, head over to YouTube and check out the show’s live chat – we’ll post the link there.