Thread: Starting Your Kid in Programming
I was thinking about piqueing my eight year old daughter's interest in
programming, err, at least to see if she is interested. I got started, and hooked, on computers back when I was about eight but didn't start
programminguntil about 10 and delved into assembly when I was 11 or 12. I think I could find a Logo implementation to see if she thinks drawing is fun and see how she takes to the structure, logic, and constructs (looping and such) used within Logo. I saw MIT released Scratch recently but it is a little funky but I haven't really looked too deeply into it. She's a very smart child but she also has a passion for fashion, so I don't know if she will take to it...although the art
aspect may help.
Any thoughts or recommendations?
SB I taught 5th and 6th grade beginning
programmingfor 3 years.
I focused on graphics-heavy exercises that made the kids' efforts and results REALLY obvious. I am dating myself here... I used an
Apple][ and worked in integer basic, using lores graphics. KUDOS for getting your daughter into assembly - that's quite a leap.
I had the opportunity to do something similar with my children a couple summers ago and wondered what to do - I started with Delphi and simple window/graphics manipulation and that fell flat. Although they enjoyed moving windows about, creating forms and then doing things with it (simple calculator, change colors of something, the regular drill) they had a hard time wrapping it in a context of future meaning. Even though we had little lectures every day for 2 weeks, the "OK, but what am I going to do with this?" factor was just way too high.
I then went to
Macand the installed
Apacheinstance. They wanted to do websites, I wanted them to understand more. After a bit of basics, I got a "Building games with
tutoring, and we signed them up for www.Aleks.com - they are moving wonderfully fast and loving it. I can't believe how much they are enjoying the online
tutoring - they're eating it up! I guess my real point here, is that I try to find the most contemporary and "flashy/showy" thing I can get my hands on and get them into it - the less they think about the math and more about how they want an "egg" to "arc" across the screen the better...
When it's all said and done, I am pretty certain that only one of my children (youngest boy) will wind up going anywhere with it... the other two are interested in completely different things - but as you certainly know, the benefits of having done it will stick with them. My personal hope is that my youngest, who is also a wonderful artist, has perfect pitch and is a great musician, will get into games and animation - I think that'd be an excellent application of his skills and gifts.
Good luck man! That's just great work!
That is what I was thinking...something flashy and showy to wow her and keep her interested...that is why Scratch looked interesting but I didn't really explore it enough to see if it was a good foundation of sorts.
Hmm, I am proposing a Cacheism...well, it should really be a Syndk8ism but what the heck. While typing "something" it came out "somethong". Very appropriate for this crowd seeing as how they are mostly on Syndk8 too. So a filter should be setup to change "something" to "somethong" and maybe even "thing" to "thong", well, err, maybe "thing" to "thong" on Syndk8 and the "something" filter here as an homage to Earl.
A fun suggestion... I should randomize it somehow so that it's unpredictable...
that'd throw everyone for a loop...
i'm going to look at scratch for my youngest (maybe both) over the weekend. Perk, can you name that js book on games
Hey TD -
I started with "How to do everything with
Moved on to Foundation ActionScript for Flash 8, Kristian Besley et al, friendsof press
the Actionscript Animated - Making Things Move, Keith Peters, friendsof press
and I am holding out on Object Oriented Action Script - because I'm still reading it
The JS book was great because they got immediate and easy success. Since all of my kids are on
Macs which come with
Apacheinstalled be default, I downloaded TextWrangler which is a pretty damn good free text editor, did a couple mods on their httpd.conf and they were good to go. But they soon wanted more action, graphics and capabilities - which is why I went to actionscript. It's not necessarily the best career choice, but hell - they're only 12, 14 and 16 FFS... I just want them to be excited.
Hope this helps!
I'll get to those..... I just downloaded and installed scratch and it's cool and great fun, going to turn the kids loose on it tomorrow and see how they fare. LOL, kept me ammused for a while
this is now something on my mind, though it probably will be a completely different ball game when my daughter-to-be is old enough to consider starting to
teach. I wonder how much it will change? I actually think people who can code will have a significant advantage over those who cannot. The masses will be relegated to using things just as they are, the coders/hackers will get more for their money, or be able to get more use out of things. Doing things others cannot. I get it all the time with my web stuff, "hey how you do that?"
An update, eldest daughter has spent the better part of the last couple of days on her computer playing with scratch. Youngest is not far behind but has been distracted by coming to check the crab pots with me. Going to recommend scratch to their school as well.
You're on the money Nuts. When's the new arrival due again?
Cheers and beers,
august. i intend on helping her find her own path, but i think coding and hardware hacking will open the world up.
Couldn't agree more Nuts.
By the time they grow up it will be one of the most important and valuable skills around (if it isn't now :-P )
I want a kid to
teachhow to program Will have to grab one of my nephews once they get a bit older.
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