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e86 Coding Club For Schools

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e86 Coding Club For Schools

Peter Unogwu, Sales Executive at e86 Limited recently spoke to school owners about the importance of integrating computer programming into their school curriculum, please see extracts from the presentation below:

Coding is a basic literacy in the digital age, and it is important for kids to understand and be able to work with and understand the technologies around them. Having children learn coding at a young age prepares them for the future. Coding helps children with communication, creativity, math, writing, and confidence.

Recent research puts coding at the forefront of future careers. So, how do we learn and teach our children how to code, and why is this so important? More importantly, how young do we begin teaching our children?

Here Are 5 Reasons Why Coding is Important for Young Minds:

• Coding is Another Language

Language teaches children how to communicate and teaches logical thinking. Language also strengthens both verbal and written skills. Children should be exposed to different languages at an early age. It helps them to understand the world around them better. Coding is a language on its own. Every letter in the Alphabet has a special formula of 0’s and 1’s that represent it. These 0’s and 1’s give the technology around us directions on how to perform. What better way for our children to understand why and how the technology around them operates than by learning to code and speaking to the technology around them.

• Coding Fosters Creativity

By experimenting, children learn and strengthen their brains. Even when they make a mistake they learn. Children can be creative and creativity is encouraged. Creativity is part of the process and not always the product. Coding is all about your idea of how you want a product to be like or function and this is totally creativity.

• Encourages Curiosity

Curiosity is a natural part of childhood, one to be encouraged and nurtured. It helps their minds develop and grow, and their emotions mature. As rewarding as curiosity can be, it can also end in disappointment, which is sometimes good for children to learn. Coding provides a safe environment for your child to learn and create, to experiment with different patterns to see where they might lead them. It allows children to ask, “What happens if I do this?” Like other forms of learning such as the arts, cooking, and science, coding classes encourage curiosity, which helps your child be more confident, creative, and resilient later in life.

• Coding Helps Children with Math Skills

Coding helps children to be able to visualize abstract concepts, lets them apply math to real-world situations and makes math fun and creative. It also helps sharpen children’s IQ especially mathematically; a child that is good with coding will definitely be good in mathematics.

• Coding Improves Writing, Academic Performance

Children who learn to code understand how to plan and organize thoughts. This can lead to better writing skills that can be built upon as coding skills develop over time. Coding is a rigorous language that is highly demanding mentally and time-consuming, a child who is good at coding will certainly be at peak level academically amongst his/her age bracket.

• Coding Helps Children Become Confident Problem Solvers

As they learn to code and give direction they learn that there is no one way to do something and that even if their way didn’t work. They can improve upon what they have already done without worrying about failing. Coding is a basic literacy in the digital age, and it is important for kids to understand and be able to work with and understand the technology around them.

Having children learn coding at a young age prepares them for the future.

Benefits of Learning Coding in School

Coding is fast becoming one of the most important subjects taught in schools. Here are five reasons why it’s beneficial to your students.

  • Coding is the new literacy
    It’s no secret that children grow up with an almost innate ability to adapt to new technologies. The way they pick up smartphones, computers, and games consoles seems like second nature – but it’s just the nature of being young. Our ability to quickly pick up complex or technical tasks diminishes with age. For example, the older you become the harder it is to learn a new language.
    The same goes for technology use and more precisely, coding. Today, the importance of learning to code rivals even that of reading and writing. It’s a core skill that can help a child develop a deeper understanding of how technology works. Given the extent to which technology shapes our lives, learning to code helps develop a better understanding of the world around us.
  • Prepare for the future jobs market
    Schools have a responsibility to provide their students with all the tools and skills they need to succeed in the modern workplace. Increasingly, that means the ability to code. Glassdoor reported that eight of the top 25 jobs in the US are tech-based and require some level of coding proficiency. These don’t necessarily have to be computer programmers but include roles such as Data Analysts and Scientists.
    Similarly, a 2016 Burning Glass report found seven million job openings that year which value coding, with roles such as computer programmer rising 12% faster than the market average. These roles are also among the best paid around. Jobs requiring coding pay $22,000 a year more on average than those that don’t.
    There is little point in focusing on skills that leave students with limited options when it comes to hitting the jobs market. By incorporating coding into the curriculum, you hand children an essential tool for building a successful career.
  • Develop problem-solving skills
    Coding can often be daunting. Presented with a significant problem, frustration can quickly build if you find yourself constantly walking down dead ends. But coding teaches a child that complex problems are simply a series of smaller problems that can be fixed in sequence. Coding can often be compared to hypothesis testing in science, particularly when testing whether a set of code will stand up and work correctly. Children will be taught to identify a problem, break the code down into segments and test each one, repairing faulty parts before moving onto the next problem.
    It’s this mindset that makes great coders, and one that pupils will benefit from regardless of subject or circumstance.
  • Instill perseverance
    To succeed in the method of hypothesizing, testing, and refining, you need one characteristic more than any other – perseverance. Creating a set of code only to see it fail upon testing is disheartening, especially if the solution isn’t immediately obvious. But if at first, you don’t succeed, try, try and try again.
    Coding takes incredible levels of perseverance to try new things, test, and find solutions to problems. It’s another vital life skill that students will draw upon for the rest of their lives.
  • Heighten language skills
    Recent research for the University of Washington found that a natural aptitude for learning languages is a better predictor of coding proficiency than maths. Instinctively, you might think there are strong comparisons between maths and coding, but code is a language, and mastering it requires many of the same logical steps to be taken.
    Code has a natural grammar and vocabulary to unlock. If you find a child is particularly good at it, you should also find their ability to learn new languages is heightened.

    Out Approach To Teaching Coding:
    Coding is important and hugely beneficial, but it poses all new challenges to teachers. Here are some quick tips we use at e86 for maximizing the effectiveness of coding classes.

    • We use live demonstrations
    One of the beauties of teaching coding is that it can be done live, right in front of your class’ eyes. Much like a live science experiment, our teachers create code and piece together programs in front of learners, creating an exciting, informative educational experience.
    This method also allows for a much richer lesson than one based purely on slides or a video. Our teachers answer questions on the fly, tailoring their code to plug knowledge gaps. Plus, learners can see what common errors are made by teachers and how to quickly rectify them.

    • We use peer-to-peer instructions
    There are financial implications for introducing coding in schools. The technology needed does require some investment, which might be a problem for schools with lower budgets. However, a compromise of two students to one computer might prove to be beneficial.
    Peer-to-peer instruction allows pupils to work in small teams. If one has a slightly higher level of understanding, they can help build up the other child’s knowledge by discussing answers and demonstrating solutions.

    • We teach one language at a time
    Coding comes in many intricate languages. Our teachers focus on mastering the essential components of one coding language before introducing others. Over time, learners will be able to recognize relevant structures in new languages and transfer their skills and knowledge across.

    • We don’t just code, solve problems
    We consider coding as predominantly a problem-solving exercise. Rather than focusing on building entire programs, we break the process down into many smaller steps.
    We develop knowledge and proficiency of each line of code required to make up a more complex program. We intentionally design bad code and challenge students to correct it.
    We jumble the order of syntaxes and semantics and test students on their ability to reorder them. These are all effective ways we use in teaching young people how to code.

Available Options
One of the most important objectives in education is to prepare students for their future careers. Over the last two decades, coding and programming have emerged as some of the most desirable skills for employers.

We approach introducing coding to children as follows:

Coding Club in Schools – The club runs during the school’s calendar as an extracurricular activity. Interested students will subscribe and lessons will be held at specific periods in the school’s computer lab or virtually for schools with stable internet connectivity.

Holiday Coding Camps – The camps opens after the school has gone on break. The camp can be held at the school’s facility or at our office or virtually.

To register your school, please click here.

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