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OT: Children and Programming

2018-03-05 by: Bret McHone
From: Bret McHone 
My oldest (7) shows a very high aptitude for logic and loves games, so I am
beginning to introduce him to the concept of programming his own. I was
wondering if anyone had a favorite system for teaching young ones how to

Currently we are exploring Scratch as well as a trial of Codakid to see how
he likes it as it has the almost instant gratification of seeing the new
sword or mob he put in the game.

We are still not entirely sure if he will really grow to love it or not,
but the initial enthusiasm is there and I want to make sure I give him the
best opportunity to learn that I can.

Any thoughts are appreciated.


=============================================================== From: Aaron welch ------------------------------------------------------ Also incredibly interested in this for my 10yo daughter. -Aaron Sent from my iPhone

=============================================================== From: JustinMcAfee ------------------------------------------------------ Have a 6mos old that my wife has tasked me with training in the digital arts. We've started looking as well. There seems to be a lot of momentum behind the Robot Turtles board game, and the "Move the Turtle" online game. Khan Academy does a decent job of Gameifying subjects and was beneficial to keeping me proficient in some subjects in HS. It has basic command line and other low level things built in. For an older kid, I've got a 15 yo I mentor who is using Unity game engine on linux to figure out programming concepts. ​Justin McAfee, cipher6 PGP Public Key: https://flowcrypt.com/pub/justinamcafee ********************************************************************** * To any NSA and FBI agents reading my email: please consider * * whether defending the US Constitution against all enemies,       * * foreign or domestic, requires you to follow Snowden's example. * ********************************************************************** Sent with ProtonMail Secure Email. ​ -------- Original Message -------- On February 3, 2018 12:41 PM, Aaron welch wrote:

=============================================================== From: Stephen Kraus ------------------------------------------------------ There is a block programming system for Staying that is very kid friendly. I'll get the name of it in a bit. e e I s , e

=============================================================== From: Stephen Haywood ------------------------------------------------------ A Raspberry pi and Python for Kids from No Starch Press will go a long way. No starch also has a Scratch book IIRC. X19fX19fX19fX19fX19fX19fX19fX19fX19fX19fX19fX19fX19fX19fX19fX18KQ2h1Z2FsdWcg bWFpbGluZyBsaXN0CkNodWdhbHVnQGNodWdhbHVnLm9yZwpodHRwOi8vY2h1Z2FsdWcub3JnL2Nn aS1iaW4vbWFpbG1hbi9saXN0aW5mby9jaHVnYWx1Zwo=

=============================================================== From: Bret McHone ------------------------------------------------------ Thank you for the suggestions! I actually do have a Pi running scratch and plan on using it as another tool. So far the structure provided by the videos on CodaKid.com have him hooked. My son is mildly autistic but has a very high IQ so he has a hard time sitting still for long periods of time unless he is really willing and having to engage his mind.. Even when watching movies he will pace circles and jump around and pretend with toys. Insanely headstrong, stubborn and hard headed (as it takes all three to adequately describe him) he can be a challenge to motivate when he doesn't have real genuine interest. With these videos we have sat down together and gone through a whole section in 2 days and has reignited his enjoyment of Minecraft. So far he has created his "Super sword" which killed the ender dragon in one hit, defined its material and how it's crafted and created a "Vampire Pig" mob along with editing their textures and stuff. I am helping him a little, but he is doing all of the coding. He just has to take a tiny break about every 5-10 mins. or so and then he comes back to it. I'm still going to give it a week to see if his interest holds before I actually pay for their program. Currently using a free trial, but we also get to count this as schoolwork since he has to read, write, perform math, type, listen and follow instructions. It's amazing that up until bedtime he is wanting to do more. But the video structure and basic layout really does help him (and me) a lot. -B.