Computer programming/coding in the 21st Century has become an invaluable skill with the majority of the industries moving towards digital solutions. With the widespread adoption of technology in daily lives, career opportunities in tech and software have become more lucrative than ever. Most school curriculums don’t always prioritise coding. To fill this gap many after school coding programs for the K-12 segment have come up offering live coding classes promising to make your child the next ‘Steve Jobs’.
Nowadays, parents are flocking to enrol their kids in a coding program and if you are reading this article that means you are too. Parents often choose coding for their kids as a gateway to a lucrative career for their children which often leads to unfruitful results. Through this article, my aim will be to help parents understand the actual need to start coding at an early age and also help them navigate through the plethora of online coding programs and choose what’s best for their child.
“Everybody should learn to program a computer, because it teaches you how to think”
Coding/computer programming is not only about creating websites, projects and apps. Learning to code helps a child develop computational thinking skills, which helps them become good problem solvers.
Coding should not precede the well-rounded skill of analytical thinking and one has to understand the problem they are trying to solve before writing a program for it and learning to code enforces this skill among kids and adults alike.
Now, with that out of the way, let's look at some of the key things that you should look out for when searching for the best coding program for your child.
While looking for a good program, check if they are STEM.ORG certified. This certification ensures that the curriculum meets certain pedagogical standards ensuring students develop critical thinking, innovation, scientific literacy and collaboration skills.
Cuemath’s coding curriculum is STEM.ORG certified and adapted from Google For Education and is designed by computer science enthusiasts and education experts. Cuemath’s curriculum is focused on mastery as well as nurturing problem-solving and critical thinking skills which are essential for any job on the market.
Coding should be Fun
Nowadays, students already have too much to deal with starting from online classes to homework and on top of that after school learning programs. Thus, making them sit in front of the computer and just instructing them to learn programming won’t yield any results. Rather, the way coding is taught should be made fun and more accessible such that anyone with or without coding experience can understand it.
Kids usually have a very short attention span keeping them engaged should be the ultimate goal for any early learning program and more so for coding. At Cuemath, the basics of programming are taught using games and fun interactive puzzles which not only helps in better understanding but also better retention.
All in one Platform
A majority of the coding courses offer assisted learning through teachers via an online video session. Thus, it is crucial to check if the platform on which the class takes place supports video/audio calling and not rely on third-party software. This significantly improves the learning experience. The platform should also feature an IDE(Integrated Development Environment) that students can use to write programs without shifting to any other platform. At Cuemath’s learning platform, students can code on python with the teacher monitoring in real-time featuring high-quality video and audio calls to facilitate collaborative learning.
With any kind of online coding program, students and parents should be able to choose the best course they have to offer with the help of an academic counsellor. The program should offer courses of varying difficulty so that students (depending on their coding proficiency) can choose the one that picks their interest.
Cuemath offers three courses for new learners. Students can choose between:
- Learning the fundamentals of game development
- Exploring the world of app development
- Diving into Data science and machine learning with Python
A good coding program should contain a good number of projects but should not be overly difficult. Through these projects, students get to showcase their creativity but at the same time learn to apply the programming concepts. These projects should have real-world connect helping students to relate them to their daily lives and thus enforcing the value of programming. All the Cuemath coding courses have a wide variety of projects ranging from fun games to real-time weather, calculator & unit conversion apps from which students can gain practical experience.
Unlike many other subjects, it has become evident that teaching coding through a live session not only makes the learning experience interactive but also helps in decreasing the chances of boredom among students. But teachers who take up the classes should be well-versed with computer science and well trained to deliver a top-notch in-class experience.
Cuemath teachers go through a stringent selection process and rigorous training. Classes are regularly monitored to maintain the highest standards and teachers are put through workshops to help them learn about upcoming tech and best teaching practices.
Well now you are equipped with the required knowledge of choosing a good coding program for your kid but before putting your child into one, understand your child’s needs and interest. Because in the rapidly progressing world of technology, what kids learn today might not be relevant in the future but kids will become better thinkers and problem solvers and that is what the world needs.
Thus, at Cuemath we believe that learning to code at an early age is crucial. Cuemath provides live 1:1 Live Online Coding classes and Math classes. Cuemath’s coding curriculum is class-leading providing a unique blend between the basics of programming and real-life projects using current computer technologies helping students achieve mastery. Book a demo and get in touch with our academic counsellor to get the best course for your child.
-By Rohit Roy
Rohit is an enthusiastic coder, designer, and educator working as a Project Lead for the Coding curriculum for Grades 4 - 6 at Cuemath. He believes that learning to code can turn kids into better problem solvers and thinkers. In his spare time, being a foodie at heart, Rohit loves to cook and also play tunes on his guitar.