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Education Programming News

Coderdojo Inspires Coding In Kids As Young As Seven 40

An anonymous reader writes "With kids growing up in an increasingly digital world, it's alarming that many of them have no idea how the devices that power their lives actually work. So three cheers for Coderdojo — a worldwide group of volunteers teaching programming and web design to children aged seven and up. From the article: 'Coderdojo's format is open and inclusive. Participants can use the operating system and programming tools of their choice. There is no set curriculum and the only rule is: "Above all: be cool." More rigid approaches, he suggests, can often stifle learners' enthusiasm: "A lot of coding tuition aimed at young people tends to revolve around games," he said. "But that can disengage some young people. Many of them, particularly girls, just aren't interested in gaming. "On the other hand, doing something like developing a web site shows them that they can do things they might not have realized they were able to and combines artistic and design skills with an understanding of why things are built in a certain way."'"
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Coderdojo Inspires Coding In Kids As Young As Seven

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  • Games (Score:4, Informative)

    by Gripp ( 1969738 ) on Wednesday December 05, 2012 @06:53PM (#42197719)
    IMO games are the key. I know I learned most of what I know because of games.

    Either trying to hack online games or dicking around with configs and custom content on PC games, I was learning. Trying to write macros to automate mundane gaming tasks. I was learning.

    Also, I know every programmer out there will want to bash my face in for this, but excel is also very good to learn from. And a lot of games stand to gain from doing a bit of heavy analysis, or at least tracking, in excel. You learn how to deal with IF and ELSE statements, arrays, tables, lookup, AND/OR logic, strings concatenation and variables. And the framework for doing so in excel is not nearly as intimidating. Most non-programmers can make handy things in excel, that if you broke all the cell into variables and functions into code, would look a whole like a real program, they just don't know it.

    At some point during all of this I got curious about "Real" programming and kept looking at C. And while I never fully learned C to a usable level I learned about pointers and memory allocation/addresses/pointers/cleanup/etc. At some point I wanted to get into linux since it seemed more programming friendly. I choose gentoo by pure coincidence, and from bootstrap+compile kernal I learned even more.

    All because of games. But the problem becomes that over time it has become harder and harder to hack games; both web and PC based. So many measures in place to stop people from doing it, and even threats of bans. I feel like this is bad for our future. Like the one thing games stood to give to society is diminished by pettiness.

In less than a century, computers will be making substantial progress on ... the overriding problem of war and peace. -- James Slagle