Cool Programs for Teaching Kids about Coding in a Fun and Engaging Way

When I was a kid, my Dad bought some books on Basic (that ancient programming language back in the days of the Apple IIe) and I remember tinkering around with it and creating a few games. It was pretty cool. I’ve always thought it would be nice to introduce the art of programming to my own kids and it seems we can. Check out these two really cool programs…

Tynker

Tell me about it:

Tynker is a self-paced course on computer programming that encourages children to innovate and create while learning programming concepts at their own pace.

It teaches Programming Concepts:

  • Repetition
  • Conditional logic
  • Computer Drawing
  • Handling keyboard Input
  • Creating apps

Computational Thinking:

  • Problem Decomposition
  • Pattern Recognition
  • Abstraction
  • Algorithmic Thinking
  • Automation

Who’s it for:

Grade 4 to 8.

Watch it in action:

Try it out:

Tynker’s Hour of Code was an initiative by code.org and CSEdWeek to introduce students to computer programming in a fun and engaging way that began in December 2013. The Hour of Code is still available for your child to give it a go…

We tried out sketch racer which is basically a modern version of Turtle Logo dating back to the 1960’s (I remember playing this one, too) but this is way cooler…

Tynker Turtle

Available here:

Toca Builders

Tell me about it:

Build and create whole new worlds with these six builders at your command:

Blox: Great at dropping and smashing blocks
Cooper: A fantastic painter
Vex: Amazing at putting blocks in stacks
Stretch: Specialized at placing blocks anywhere
Connie: Enjoys lifting and moving blocks
Jum-Jum: Loves to spray paint

What’s great about it:

  • Easy to use, kid-friendly interface
  • No third party advertising
  • No in-app purchases
  • Creative freedom – no rules, no time limits – play any way you want

Who’s it for:

Age 5+

Watch it in action:

Available on:

Published by Shen-Li

SHEN-LI LEE is the author of “Brainchild: Secrets to Unlocking Your Child’s Potential”. She is also the founder of Figur8.net (a website on parenting, education, child development) and RightBrainChild.com (a website on Right Brain Education, cognitive development, and maximising potentials). In her spare time, she blogs on Forty, Fit & Fed, and Back to Basics.

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