Top 4 Reasons Your Child Should Learn To Code in 2021
Calling all parents… when you think of coding, what comes to mind?
Perhaps you think about the classic 80’s “geeks” who spent their days in their parents’ basements tinkering with their homemade computers, avoiding the prom. Or maybe you think of some of these more contemporary coders from tv and movies, many of whom are either superheroes or supervillains.
The fact is, coding is no longer reserved for geniuses (or evil movie hackers). What was once a hobby for a select few is now a critical skill that is growing fast in demand.
In this digital age, we are inundated with technology and are constantly interacting with coding.
The software on your new laptop? Someone coded that.
The loud buttons on your children’s toys? Someone coded that.
Want to play with some virtual bubble wrap? There’s an app for that (and someone coded that, too).
The demand for skilled coders has never been higher than it is in 2021, and the cognitive benefits of learning to code continue to emerge. Learning to code will not only kickstart your child’s future, but set them up for success in their academic and adult lives. And the earlier they start… the better!
Here are the 4 biggest reasons why your child should learn to code now.
- Learning to Code is as Beneficial as Learning Another Language
Learning another language teaches children communication skills, logical thinking skills, attention and focus. It protects against cognitive decline in later years. After children have learned one new language, learning additional languages then also comes much easier.
How is learning to code like learning another language?
There are many different spoken languages around the world (thousands of them), and there are hundreds of programming languages. The term language to describe different types of code is actually very fitting.
Just like a spoken language, a programming language communicates information (to and from a computer) and has grammar rules (syntax). It also takes a good deal of time and practice to become fluent in a programming language, similar to a spoken one.
And, of course, the cognitive benefits of learning another language apply to learning to code as well! Coding teaches children logical thinking skills, and hones their attention and focus. After they learn one programming language, others will in turn be much easier to learn!
Once your child has learned to code, they’ll be able to “speak with” and understand the technology around them, and they’ll be able to express themselves to people everywhere, regardless of their spoken language. Coding is the language of our world… and it’s not going away any time soon!
- Coding Fosters Problem Solving Skills and Creativity
Problem solving and creativity are at the heart of coding.
As children learn to code, they have to create new ways of solving problems, and they are constantly experimenting. They retrace their steps, assess what they’ve already tried, design a new approach, and then try again.
Through this repeated experimentation, your child will learn resilience and persistence in solving problems, versatility in overcoming obstacles, and that success is the result of hard work and trial and error. Mistakes aren’t failures, but rather opportunities to learn and improve on what they’ve already mastered.
Your child will learn that there’s more than one way to solve a problem.
Children who learn how to code become confident, creative problem solvers, which will benefit them in every other aspect of their lives into adulthood.
- Coding Improves Academic Performance
When it comes to coding, the first academic subject that comes to your mind is probably math. Indeed, coding and math are very closely associated.
Coding will help your child apply math to real-world situations and visualize abstract concepts. Without realizing it, your child will be applying Common Core Mathematical Practices in their coding projects, such as making sense of problems, perseverance in solving them, mathematical modeling, and precision.
According to the College Board, students who take the AP Computer Science test score higher on their AP math exams than other students. Additionally, this study on students who had a computer science curriculum incorporated into their algebra class shows gains in the students’ understanding of mathematical concepts.
But there are benefits in other academic areas as well.
Coding teaches students how to plan and organize their thoughts, which leads to better writing skills.
Coding also helps students learn how to structure large tasks and break them up into smaller steps, create theories, and develop logic patterns, which will benefit them in any academic subject and in their adult life.
- Coding Is The Job of the Future
We’ve all heard it before…technology is the future. And it’s true!
All businesses rely on coding, not just in the technology sector. As more and more businesses and industries move to digital platforms, there is a surge in demand for skilled coders to develop software and apps for computers, smartphones, tablets, and even appliances. This is also leading to a greater need for coders who work in database administration to help businesses manage their exponential increase in data.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported impressive median annual wages for coding-related jobs in 2020, and they project remarkable growth in the number of jobs through 2029:
For comparison, the median annual wage for all occupations in 2020 was $44,950 and the projected job growth rate for all occupations is 4% through 2029. Skilled coders enjoy higher salaries and a significantly more positive job outlook! But…
We are facing a shortage of coders.
According to Code.org, 67% of new jobs in STEM are in computing, but only 11% of STEM bachelor’s degrees are in computer science. And HackerRank states that the demand for coders is so high, some employers are no longer requiring a 4-year bachelor’s degree!
What does this mean?
This means that not only is it beneficial and lucrative to learn to code, but new skilled coders will be making a huge contribution to the future of our economy. There has never been a better or more critical time to learn to code!
What if your child doesn’t want to pursue coding as a profession? Should they still learn to code?
Coding knowledge and skill will still prove to be extremely beneficial to your child in their professional lives. It will provide them with career flexibility in a rapidly-changing digital world, and they’ll be in high demand in any job.
No matter the business, and no matter the industry, your child will be working with others who work in some sort of technical role. Even if they don’t code, their exposure to coding will help them to work more effectively with those who do. They will have a common reference point to tackle complex problems together. Their coding knowledge may also help them automate certain tasks in their daily work, helping them to be even more productive.
We’ve shown you the 4 biggest reasons why your child should learn to code. And here’s a bonus reason…
Coding is fun!
Children can start learning coding concepts at any age, even without a computer. And with age-appropriate coding activities, your child will love the challenge and reward of seeing their code come to life! There is so much satisfaction in solving puzzles and making useful things.
Coding will allow your child not only to consume technology, but to create it.
Let’s Get Coding!
Ready to get started?
Our free coding tutorials will get your child off on the right foot to learn core coding concepts. These tutorials are targeted for 8th-12th graders, and are self-paced and interactive. Thinking Cap subscribers get access to brand new tutorials before anyone else.
If you’ve got questions, we’ve got answers. Reach out to us at any time at email@example.com, and we’ll be in touch soon!