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The Rise in After-School Coding Programs for Kids These Days

The Rise in After-School Coding Programs for Kids These Days

What is coding? Why is it becoming increasingly popular?

Coding is the process of using computer languages to tell your computer to do specific tasks. In essence, you have to type out a set of instructions in a computer language so that your computer can perform the task without any further manual assistance. Sophisticated programs are run through computers nowadays with the help of coding.

We live in a digital era where almost every aspect of our life is heavily reliant on the digital medium. Coding is a way of getting the digital medium to work for you. If you are good at coding, you can program your computer to virtually aid you in anything and everything. There are quite a few reasons why coding is becoming increasingly popular these days.

  • It aids creativity. While coding, the sky is your limit. You can use your imagination and creativity to get your computer to do almost anything.
  • Knowing how to code makes it easy to navigate your way around the nooks and crannies of this digital world.
  • Career opportunities. Good and reliable coders are in demand all over the world as more and more organizations are making the shift to the digital medium.

Coding for kids

Gone are the days when kids used to flock to playgrounds and alleyways with their friends after school hours to play and have fun. Everything has moved to the virtual sphere now. Most kids and young adults these days rely on popular MMORPGs, RPGs, and online multiplayer shooting games to have fun with their friends post school hours. Hence, almost all kids today have a basic idea about the workings and machinations of a computer system.

Kids are creative in general. They have not yet been bogged down by the incomprehensible and crushing pressure of the real world. So, learning how to code helps them dream about their future. Making a computer work to your tunes is a great positive reinforcement for the developing brain. This is why we can see more and more kids learning how to code these days. Plus parents and guardians are encouraging kids to code too. They see this as an opportunity for the kid to actually gain important skills while having fun simultaneously.

Reasons for the rise in after-school coding programs for kids

High demand for coders: Personnel who are learned the ways of coding are heavily in demand in the job market today. As per a survey conducted by Code.org, 71% of STEM jobs require computing as an essential skill. On the contrary, only a meager 8% of STEM graduates have found their footing in jobs focused on Computer Science (CS). This shortage of CS majors means a kid learning how to code today can help fill this void in the future. Plus CS majors, on average, earn 40% more than any other equivalent college graduate.

The fun aspect of coding: Coding is not just learning computer languages and performing tasks. It also broadens the horizons of creativity considerably. In a world where adventurers and explorers are a thing of the past, coding can help a child explore something new – the virtual realm along with its endless possibilities. Games like Roblox and Minecraft are fun ways for kids to get initiated into coding.

Competitive edge: Everything today involves cut-throat competition. While we might not be living in the era of survival for the fittest anymore, we definitely are heading into an age where minuscule edges in skills will make the difference in the field of employment. There is a statistic that states that 65% of soon-to-be-employed youth will go into jobs that do not yet exist. Coding, when learned young, becomes a part of the natural mindset of the kid and helps them deal with unknown challenges head-on. Moreover, almost every technical job nowadays requires a basic knowledge of coding.

Enhanced creativity: Studies have shown that learning a new language improves cognitive abilities and brain functions in a kid. And computer languages are languages after all. Basically, a kid who knows to code will now be able to express themselves through code. As they keep on learning new languages like Java, CSS, HTML, or Python, they shift from being ‘consumers of technology’ to ‘creators of technology’.

Aids in problem-solving and inculcates persistence: A problem-solving mindset is always going to be in demand, especially in the career aspect. Coding helps create a logical, rational, and problem-solving mindset in kids that helps them tackle difficult tasks with ease. Learning any new language is difficult, but once kids finally figure out the computer languages they are learning, the instant gratification they receive when the computer responds to their commands perfectly helps build their persistence. They realize that just because something is taking time does not mean they should give up.

Kids and coding - the future

The future of this world looks very bleak indeed. With a plethora of problems waiting to be solved and new problems being added to the pile everyday, we are in dire need of a set of minds who can persistently work towards untangling the problems one by one.

With more kids getting interested in coding, it indeed sparks a glimmer of hope that maybe all is not lost yet. Various coding apps like Lightbot, Code Karts, Spritebox, Osmo, Kodable, etc. are available nowadays to assist kids in learning coding on their own. Kids who are about 7 years of age can start learning coding while kids younger than that can be initiated into logical reasoning mindset with the help of a number of pre-coding activities available.

At SCRATCHPAD, we like you to step into a space where creativity knows no boundaries. Here, you can enrol your kids based on their skill level and not their age. We will provide a number of session timings to choose from for your convenience. Get in touch with us to learn more about our program modules, or book a free trial!