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The Importance of Students Learning Computer Programming in School

Updated on July 2, 2017

Stem

What is Computer Programming?

Programming languages are utilized by programmers to develop scripts or applications for computers to execute. It is important to understand that not all programs perform the same functions because they do not. There are several different types of programming languages utilized for different tasks, which is insinuated in the following list below:

These languages are utilized to write code for the Internet and develop webpages.

  • HTML
  • JavaScript
  • PHP
  • Python
  • Ruby
  • XML

These programs are utilized to develop applications such as interactions or calculations.

  • Java
  • C#
  • D
  • Visual Basic

These programs are utilized to develop animated programs that involve interactions in computer games.

  • C
  • C#
  • C++
  • AIML
  • Prolog

These programs can be utilized to maintain and create databases.

  • MySQL
  • SQL
  • FoxPro

These programs are utilized to develop games.

  • C
  • C#
  • Java
  • DarkBASIC

Learning Computer Programming in School

In the past few years, programming has become more and more essential in the computer world. President Barack Obama endorsed computer programming in K-12 schools because learning just a small amount of code at a time can make a huge difference. Being able to utilize a computer to send an email, tweet a message on twitter, post a message on Facebook or post an image on Instagram is simple, but understanding how a computer interprets the information when processing is more interesting. Learning facts have become less relevant since any question can be researched on Google in a millisecond; it is skills that will help this young generation and the next succeed. Listed below are a few reasons why programming is important and should be learned in schools:

1) Programming in the Digital Age.

Kids are born into a world surrounded by computers, Internet, iPhones, iPads, cellphones, and social media sites. When kids learn to program they will have an understanding of how technology helps all of the digital aspects function.

2) Programming can have a huge Impact in the World.

Programming can alter the world because it already has begun to do so. It is technology that has allowed people to slowly alter the world by the use of social media, writing blogs, creating protests online, and voicing their opinions on controversial topics. All of these things have been done with the help of technology because it's more effective. Each of these aspects are done on websites, which are developed by programming languages.

3) Programming can Motivate Kids to Express their Thoughts.

Programming can help kids bring their ideas to life with innovation. Programming allows kids to think outside of the norm than how they normally perceive what is around them.

4) Programming does not have to be Arduous to Learn.

Programming can be learned in increments just as the ability to learn how to speak another language, read or write.

The Lack of Computer Programming in Schools

Kids should begin learning programming in Elementary School to give them an early start. Of course not all educators will agree that kids need to learn programming, but rather optional. This does not mean that they need to learn Python, Ruby or PHP, but rather have an understanding of its computational logic.

There are a lot of jobs in the field of science, technology, engineering, and math also known as STEM. There are several open jobs in these fields because there are not many people who have the skill set to fulfill the positions. Some of the reasons why schools are not teaching coding is because they follow a school guideline that does not include programming, schools may not have funding, there are not many teachers who know coding themselves, and some schools are too poor to afford computers or may not have internet access.

The Lack of Girls Learning Computer Programming

There are several young girls who feel discouraged to learn programming because they are told that they should be doing something other than learning programming. A lot of young girls and teen girls are told not to bother learning programming because it's not for them. There would be more women graduating from colleges with a degree in STEM if they were encouraged to learn programming.

Resources to help Students Learn Programming

The World Wide Web has become a large place where so much information can be found on several subjects. Coding can be fun which will help students become even more interested in programming.

  • Tynker - Tynker is a website where kids can learn how to code. Kids can learn how to build apps, create projects, and design games with Python and Javascript. https://www.tynker.com
  • Kano - Kano allows students to learn how to create a computer . Also, there are several coding tutorials to help for guidance. https://kano.me
  • Alice - Alice is a website where students can learn 3D programming, create animated movies, and video games with the uswe of Java, C++, and C#. http://www.alice.org
  • Khan Academy - Khan Academy has several different courses to study including math, science, computer programming, history, art, economics, and more. https://www.khanacademy.org
  • Code - Code is a website that offers students and girls in particular the opportunity to learn computer science. Code organizes an Hour of Code campaign that provides a leading curriculum in computer science. This campaign is sponsored by Microsoft, Facebook, and Google. https://code.org
  • CodeHS - CodeHS is a website that teaches you how to think and solve a problem as a programmer would using Karel. If students want to continue learning then there is a monthly subscription of $25. https://codehs.com
  • Udacity - Udacity is a website that has video lectures for students to further their knowledge of coding. Also, they can interact with Google employees through the lectures on different topics. https://www.udacity.com
  • Treehouse - Treehouse is a website that has courses to help students learn how to build a website. If students want to learn more they can pay a monthly subscription fee of $25. https://teamtreehouse.com
  • Code School - Code School is a website that teaches in depth courses in 4 different categories which are Ruby, JavaScript, HTML/CSS, and iOS. The majority of courses are free, but certain courses will require a $25 a month to access an entire course. https://www.codeschool.com
  • Code Avengers - Code Avengers is a website that offers you programming courses in Python, HTML/CSS, JavaScript, Web Development, Design, Introduction to coding, Computer Science, and Game Development. https://www.codeavengers.com

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