Teaching Kids Programming

In order to teach kids how to program, you need first to get them interested in something that is computer related. One of the best ways to get them interested in computers is games. They may want to write their own games, and that could be their entry into programming.

Here are some links to sites that deal with this subject.

CoderDojo

CoderDojo is a web site for non profit organizations that teach kids programming, starting at age 7. Their wiki has more information.

App Invetor

App Inventor is a beginner introduction to programming and app creation. From MIT.

Scratch

Also, from MIT, there is the Scratch language. You can program right from the web site.

Python and PyGames

Python is a very clean and very easy to understand language, yet a very powerful one as well.

PyGames is a set of libraries that allow someone to write their own games using the language.

Here are several tutorials on the Python language, which you will need to write games using PyGames:

Robocode

IBM Alphaworks Robocode teaches kids Java programming while writing a game.
Robocode Central is a web site dedicated to the Robocode community. It has lots of resources about Robocode.

Slashdot discussion on Robocode, titled: Learning Java through violence

Kuro5hin discussion on Robocode

Cognitoy's Mindrover

Cognitoy has a game called Mindrover, which is often used in education. Check Mindrover educational resources for more detail.

Squeak

Squeak is a language that has developed into a community of students and teachers interested in learning and teaching programming using this deriviative of Smalltalk-80 object oriented language.

HTML and Javascript

Some kids can get started using plain HTML, writing web pages for everyone on the net to see. The instant gratification provided from instantly publishing their work, can be a good motivation for them to get started.

As they grow more curious and competent, kids could start to explore other pages on the internet ("How is this menu done?", ...etc.). They could go on from there to Javascript.

PHP

PHP is a relatively easy language to use. Here are some tutorials on it.

Other Resources for kids and programming

Discussions and other stuff

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Comments

Gamemaker

I can recommend Gamemaker for teaching kids programming.

It is being used by a number of schools, see http://www.gamelearning.edu.au.

I have taught it to grades 1 to 8 with success.

http://online.haileybury.vic.edu.au/sites/edrington

I have assembled useful teaching resources at http://www.freewebs.com/schoolgamemaker/

Robocode

Robocode is not hosted at http://robocode.sourceforge.net/ the links cited are obsolete.

Baltie

We have stopped using GameMaker because is not real programming tools. We have moved on Baltie - 3D education programming tool (http://www.sgpsys.com). It is being used in school in Central Europe. I think there are many competitions. I like it!

RoboMind

Or take a look at:

www.robomind.net

RoboMind is a very simple educational programming
environment that will familiarize you with the basics of computer
science by programming your own robot. In addition to an introduction
into popular programming techniques, you will also gain insight into
areas such as robotics and artificial intelligence. It's entirely free
for personal use.

Roblox - Free Online Kids' Building & Programming Game

ROBLOX is an online virtual world and building game for kids. It uses the Lua scripting language. Kids can have fun and learn programming at the same time. Each user is given a "place" which they can build on and add objects to. The objects can have very complicated behaviors - for instance, a working helicopter or a door that only certain people are allowed through. There is an extensive help section with tutorials and active forums to ask for advice and trade development tips. Check it out at www.roblox.com.

Teşekkür (Şükran-Minnet)

Çocuklar için programlama öğrenmeye yardımcı yazılım ararken denk geldim. Bilgilendirici oldu. Emeğin için teşekkürler.

It uses the Lua scripting

It uses the Lua scripting language. Kids can have fun and learn programming at the same time. Each user is given a "place" which they can build on and add objects to. The objects can have very complicated behaviors - for instance, a working helicopter or a door that only certain people are allowed through.

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