Programming education is such an important pillar of a modern education, yet it remains something that most school aren’t teaching. This needs to change. Just like we teach kids literacy skills so they can communicate or teach them numeracy skills so they participate in an economy, we need to now be teaching them how to code. Knowing how to code is a form of literacy in modern society.
Let me paint you a picture…
Technology is everywhere, it was used to make the food we will eat today, it was used to tell us today’s weather, even to write this very post. Yet, most people’s understanding of the languages used to create with technology is poor. This is akin to Da Vinci’s time where humans walked around and no one understood the anatomy under their skin. Similarly, we are surrounded by devices everywhere we go and very few people understand the technology inside them.
The macroeconomic implications
Learning how to code is also vital if Australia is going to continue growing its economy into global markets. Just think of the billions of dollars being pumped into California right now from every economy across the world via the Internet. Now think about how many of the apps you use on a daily basis were made in Australia. These digital exports have the potential to employ millions of Australians, generating wealth and employment for generations to come. This isn’t a problem our Governments or our schools and educators can solve on their own; in fact, it’s not a problem at all – it’s an opportunity. We just need leaders to make it happen, and as a community, we must make it a priority. We need to think of coding as a new form of manufacturing. Instead of our kids hands pulling levers in the future, they will be writing code.
Do kids respond well to coding education?
As mentioned in the article, I have just finished our first term of code club at PEGS and its been an amazing success. Some kids are already building their own apps (writing objective C in Xcode) after only 6 weeks of coding education. But we’ve got big problems ahead of us, 60 kids applied for only 20 places. What do the the other 40 do? What when we expand beyond years 7-9? This is one school in one city across the country!! There’s thousands of other kids out there who would love to have this opportunity. This problem must be solved…
That’s the reason why Bec and I have created Code the Future, an organisation designed to connect developers with educators in schools to help kids learn how to code. Imagine 10 years from now, an entire generation of kids who know how to code. This is the future! If you know a developer or an educator, share this with them.