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Wtf even is coding anyway?

(13 Posts)
teaandakitkat Sat 25-Nov-17 10:56:33

My 10 yr old is interested in coding. I have no idea what it even is. Is it writing computer games? Hacking the parental controls on your tablet? Getting to stuff you shouldn't on youtube?

Please someone tell me in really simple terms what to buy him for Christmas. I'm happy to learn alongside him if he needs some adult input. Do we buy a book? Online course? Expensive equipment?

He has an android tablet, I have a MacBook and an old sony laptop he could probably use if it doesn't need anything complicated.

My head is spinning with all the online info and options. I've looked at some of the past questions and answers on here too But it's still as clear as mud to me. I'm not technologically minded at all.

School code club has a huge waiting list so that's no help and there's nothing taught in the classroom.

Exokey Sat 25-Nov-17 11:15:00

A starting point would be what kind of area does he want to get into? Has he expressed an interest in what he wants to create: websites, games, apps etc?

Barbaro Sat 25-Nov-17 11:17:32

OK so coding is to do with a computers language, it tells the computer what to do with rules and instructions basically. It is used in gaming and for anything computer orientated.

I would buy him a few courses in coding, for things like python, java, c, c# (these are all languages, like French, German, English etc but for a computer).

That should keep him busy for a while and they are all £10 each. smile

Barbaro Sat 25-Nov-17 11:18:47

By the way I've given him lots of languages to learn because you need to know them all basically for coding these days. Knowing just one or two tends to be useless. But those are the basic ones to start off with.

Exokey Sat 25-Nov-17 11:22:05

I think throwing multiple ones at him especially such a wide variety for a beginner would be very overwhelming especially for a kid and could lose interest quite quickly.

susiederkins31 Sat 25-Nov-17 11:22:32

Have you tried your library? Many have Code Clubs or similar now.

Code Club starts with Scratch which is free online. If you take a look at the Code Club website you can download some of the early lessons.

Peanutbuttercheese Sat 25-Nov-17 11:28:06

Maybe buy him a raspberry pi, they are cheap.
It's basically the mathematically minded writing computer code to make computers programmes do 'things'

The way you have written your post reminds me of Jen from the IT crowd. Just don't panic.

thepatchworkcat Sat 25-Nov-17 11:28:15

They should be doing some at school really. Although it’s another of those things added to the curriculum without teachers necessarily having the skills to teach it.

Try Scratch - it’s popular with the children at my school.

Toomanycats99 Sat 25-Nov-17 11:28:35

My 10yo dd loves scratch. She started in in y4 at school. She also goes in and off to a coding club - again they start with scratch. We have a carol vorderman introduction book. My daughter was able to use a 13yo laptop to do it on but not sure if that limits what you and do. She just started with little animated creatures and simple games.

TheEmmaDilemma Sat 25-Nov-17 11:30:47

Another vote for a raspberry pi. Great starting point.

BarbaraOcumbungles Sat 25-Nov-17 11:33:44

I’ve bought da a raspberry pi for Christmas but no idea what else we’ll need to go with it. Amazon iswash with starter kits but the choice is mind boggling!

sagamartha Sat 25-Nov-17 12:11:13

You don't need a Raspberry Pi if they have their own computer. Python, Scratch, Sonic Pi etc are all free and can be downloaded on to a computer.

All good ways to learn the basics of coding.

A Pi is great for linking electronics and coding though.

RustyBear Sat 25-Nov-17 12:21:45

You can search here to see if there’s a public code club with spaces near you

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