If you’ve ever made a website, you might have noticed how unimpressive everything looked after you were done coding the HTML.
This isn’t your fault. It’s hard work to code an entire website, but the HTML is only half of the story. HTML provides the foundation for your website, while CSS makes everything look nice and pretty. If you’d like to make nice-looking websites, then you’ll want to look for a CSS tutorial for kids. If you’d like to teach CSS to kids or learn CSS for kids, this article will give you a basic introduction to why we use CSS and how it can improve the look of a website.
CSS For Kids — Why CSS?
Before you teach CSS to kids, let’s understand what CSS is.
CSS stands for cascading style sheets. Cascading is what happens to the stylings you apply. What do I mean?
Think of your website as a big box, with lots of smaller boxes inside it that contain the header, the title, the paragraphs, the font size, etc. An introduction to CSS coding for kids should include introductory coverage of HTML and CSS so that your kids understand the different elements and properties in a website that they can manipulate with the help of CSS.
Applying a style rule in CSS cascades down to all the smaller boxes according to a specific hierarchy, bringing the cascading to CSS. This is the most important fact about CSS that any CSS classes for kids would cover.
Think of it as a trickle-down effect that you can use to apply stylistic choices to the smaller parts of your code.
If you’ve ever wanted to make a website that was more than just text, then you need to learn CSS. Make use of fun colors and images when teaching CSS for kids to engage their natural curiosity further.
How CSS Is Used
To teach CSS for kids, let’s look at how we code.
First, you have your website that’s written in a .html file. This contains all the text in your website, along with rules for how the web page is structured. Think of this as the skeletal frame of your website.
Then you have your .css file, which includes all the code about what your website should look like.
Think of when you need to update or change your website. You’ll need to move around a lot of code and maybe add in a lot of words. This is when you’ll need to change your .html file.
How do you teach CSS for kids and make them understand why we separate code and style? Well, when you change and add content, you don’t want to accidentally delete some critical code that actually holds your website together. You don’t want to bump the very foundational pillars of your home while you’re doing some interior decorating. The same principle applies here. CSS isn’t mandatory, but it will save you a lot of headaches in the long run.
CSS makes it super convenient and flexible to change your website’s looks. There are plenty of ways to learn CSS for kids because it’s fairly intuitive, as well as easy to understand, even for children.
While HTML has continued to develop, it’s become fairly proficient at managing the appearance of your website. But it binds together the structural code of your website with the design code at the same time. When teaching CSS for kids, try to code a .html file with all the design scripts it has to make them first-hand realize its limitations. Then expose them to writing CSS code to realize how convenient it is.
The Advantages Of CSS
The main advantage of using CSS is that it allows you to keep your website code and design code separate. This allows you to reduce the number of errors and problems you bump into and keeps things compartmentalized and neat for your convenience.
Your internet browser also takes up a fair amount of memory and performance time when it needs to process and understand your .html files. By reducing the size of your .html files, it allows your website to load faster.
There’s also the problem of new devices coming out every now and then. Think of electronic devices like tablets, e-book readers, smart fridges, and smartwatches coming out every few years.
They all have internet connectivity but have different screen sizes and resolutions that work best. When you make a website, how do you make sure your website designed for a desktop computer also works fine on a smartwatch or smartphone?
This is where CSS comes in handy. You can assign different presentation rules and designs for other devices with your CSS code. You don’t need to change the structure of your .html page with every new device that comes out.
You’ll need to change your website’s presentation so that the display, colors, and screen size are all compatible with however people want to browse the internet. All you need to do is keep changing and adding to the .css file so that it’s compatible with any new device. Try to use your smartphone, laptop, and any other devices you have when teaching CSS for kids to demonstrate your point.
CSS even supports Braille-friendly tactile devices now, and all it takes is your editing the website’s .css file to make it accessible to the visually impaired. And what if you have a huge website with thousands of pages? With HTML, you’d need to edit every single file. But with the power of CSS, you just need to change one .css file to create changes across thousands of web pages. When teaching CSS for kids, make sure to talk about how CSS is beneficial for making websites more accessible and inclusive.
CSS Basic Code
Now that we understand what CSS is and why we should use it, let’s look at how we can begin to use it.
All CSS requires specific syntax to work properly, just like with HTML code.
Let’s take a straightforward example. If you want to change your website’s background color, what do you do?
You go to the .css file and add the following code:
With this, your website has now changed its background color to blue. Next, you put styling instructions within the curly brackets and target a class file by putting a dot before the name.
Then you follow the code “background-color” with a full colon, followed again by the value you want the background color to be. In this case, we’ve chosen blue as our background choice. Now we conclude our style code with a semicolon.
Save this .css file and refresh the browser to see your results.
You should be able to see the effects of your code instantly.
The whole structure of the code you write is called a rule-set.
The first element name in your HTML code is known as the selector. The selector defines the element to be styled. To style a different element, you need to change the selector. Make a list of the elements and help your students memorize them when teaching CSS for kids.
Then you encounter things like declarations. These are single rules such as “color:red;”. The declaration decides which of the element’s properties you want to style.
Then we have the properties. Color is a property of the elements. In CSS, you choose which properties you want to affect with the rule you apply. If you want to teach CSS coding for kids, introduce them to Scratch and Lua to understand the importance of elements and properties.
Then you have property values. This is the value you find to the right of the property, which is found right after the colon. When choosing for color, you can select from a range of possible appearances for a given property.
Consider enrolling your child in CSS classes for kids to help them become experts at website building.
On a side note, it’s not a bad idea to teach CSS for kids by making them copy down existing code that works. It helps them hard-wire the right syntax, colon, and semicolon usage into memory so that it becomes a habit.
CSS is a powerful and simple language you can learn to change the appearance of your website. HTML and CSS go hand in hand when creating a website because you really can’t have one without the other. A CSS tutorial for kids can be a great way to introduce your child to the concepts of website making.
By separating the design code and structural code of a website, you make your websites load faster, make your code easier to modify, and make websites smoother to load in general.
Read more articles on BYJU’S FutureSchool blog to learn more about CSS or even sign your child up for a FREE trial class in coding.