Children today have a distinct advantage because there were few options for learning to code until recently.1 Today, online learning has achieved mind-boggling feats in interactive courses, online tutorials, and some of the best fun practices in teaching young minds.
Gaming could probably be one of the easiest and most fun ways to hone your child’s coding skills. There are many games that can significantly enhance your child’s academic, social, and recreational skills. Games can be a naturally entertaining way for your child to learn communication skills, think critically, and comprehend difficult academic concepts.
While just playing the game may not teach your child everything they need to know about coding, it is, however, the most enjoyable way to practice what they are learning. Most children love playing games, and what better way to practice what they learn than by spending their time playing their favourite games and reinforcing their coding skills without even realizing it?
How Does Gamification Help Retain More Knowledge?
Gamification is all about making classroom activities feel like a game, which includes combining qualities like creative thinking, teamwork, and fun. There are various ways to incorporate games into learning to help children learn and comprehend the content they are studying.
Gamification of learning can help children develop engaging, instructional, and entertaining content for a wide range of audiences and topics. Although it isn’t meant to transform homework or coding into a game, it does use human psychology to motivate your child to engage in them.
The interactivity that gamification provides is a fundamental benefit in making coding more engaging and instructive. Furthermore, immersive aspects such as role-playing and competition, when used effectively, can make learning more fun.2
How Does Gamification Help Improve Creative Abilities in Children?
Learning is more effective when children are excited about it, and gamified learning is one of the most popular techniques in childhood education. The strategy was in use before, but its current popularity results from its effectiveness.
Gamified learning fosters the development of early skills such as observation, critical thinking, planning, decision-making, and teamwork. Gamified learning programs allow children to work together in a competitive atmosphere to achieve group goals. This encourages discussion, critical thinking, and strategic thinking. But a game-based learning technique isn’t entirely dependent on technology. It can be applied to a classroom, at-home learning environment, or any creative endeavor to reap educational rewards.
Learning new things is a pleasurable experience that triggers dopamine release in children and adults alike; this helps them remember what they’ve learned. Coding can also benefit from gamification since it allows learners to interact with knowledge in an informal and effective manner.3
Smart Ways to Involve Children in Coding Activities
Digital gadgets and games dominate the lives of today’s youth. However, explaining technology to your kids might be confusing if you’re not familiar with the language. Thus, parents who want their children to learn how to code can benefit from doing the following:
- Integrate it With Their Current Interests
Coding can be made more fun for children by including elements of gaming. Playing games that have concepts similar to coding can pique your child’s interest in the subject. Activities such as building toys, robots, painting, and playing video games can help children learn to code.
Children can improve their coding skills by playing games such as:
The game is available on any platform and is a massive hit among youngsters everywhere. This makes it one of the greatest coding games for children. In addition to being a game, Minecraft is also used to create games that are part of a larger collection. With the option to develop games in a game that they enjoy, parents can assist their children in staying engaged. The game’s controls are also basic enough for children as young as 3 or 4 years to be able to master it.4
- LEGO Mindstorms®
This is one of the most well-known games, along with Minecraft. To create useful robots, LEGO Mindstorms® combines the iconic building blocks with computer programming. Mindstorms kits have evolved along with technology, and the most recent models are quite impressive for children to grasp coding concepts.5
- Accompany Them as They Learn to Code
Even though children want to explore and learn everything on their own, many still prefer to have their parents accompany them on new adventures. Learning new things may be less terrifying, when they are surrounded by individuals they can rely on. You and your child could both benefit from you sitting with your child for support if your child is reluctant. Besides, coding can be an excellent learning experience, even if you don’t believe yourself to be particularly tech-savvy.
- Socialize it
Consider turning coding courses into a social event. You could, for example, plan a community coding lesson with instructors and other parents. You can also look for online coding academies that provide private group lessons to your children and their friends. Children tend to share similar interests as their peers because they don’t want to be left out. A supportive community of fellow coders can also be a motivating factor.
Many young programmers have learned to code on their own. Because of how tech-savvy they are, it’s not difficult for today’s children to learn to code on their own. However, this is a long and winding road, and not having immediate one-on-one support might be frustrating. Therefore, you can use the practical methods listed below to help your child learn to code on their own.
- Enrolling in coding boot camps
- Playing coding games
- Joining an online coding institute
- Taking tuition/private lessons
- Through education/curriculum at school
Suggested Coding Game:
Lightbot is one such game where the player can learn programming without even realizing it. Even though it isn’t as popular as Minecraft or LEGO®, it has done fairly well. This game does not teach a specific programming language, but rather programming ideas. Sequencing, overloading, recursive loops, and conditionals are just some of the concepts your child will master while playing Lightbot™.6
Given the rising dependency on technological gadgets such as smartphones, laptops, and home security systems, coding is a skill that can help anyone. Coding has now become an elective hobby for children because a basic understanding of this new skill is critical for overall development.7
In addition to learning to code with games, there are various other ways to teach your child how to code. To learn about them, visit the BYJU’S FutureSchool blog.
- Ways to Learn to Code in 2022: 18 of the Best. (n.d.). Retrieved April 14, 2022, from https://careerfoundry.com/en/blog/web-development/ways-to-learn-to-code/
- Strengthen Training Effectiveness: Gamification Increases Knowledge Retention – CLD. (n.d.). Retrieved April 14, 2022, from https://www.cldinc.com/blog/strengthen-training-effectiveness-gamification-increases-knowledge-retention/
- Why is gamified learning through creative learning activities important for early childhood education. (n.d.). Retrieved April 14, 2022, from https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/blogs/voices/why-is-gamified-learning-through-creative-learning-activities-important-for-early-childhood-education/
- A Parent’s Guide to Minecraft : App Store Story. (n.d.). Retrieved April 14, 2022, from https://apps.apple.com/us/story/id1429104883
- Lego Mindstorms Robot Inventor Review | PCMag. (n.d.). Retrieved April 14, 2022, from https://www.pcmag.com/reviews/lego-mindstorms-robot-inventor
- Lightbot. (n.d.). Retrieved April 14, 2022, from https://lightbot.com/hoclearn.html
- 8 reasons why every child should learn to code – Teach Your Kids Code. (n.d.). Retrieved April 14, 2022, from https://teachyourkidscode.com/why-coding-is-important-to-learn/