The world is moving in a different direction. The job market is a little less focused on whom you know, though this will probably always be important, and more focused on what you know. What you need to know in the job market is getting to be more tech-based. And the sooner kids learn the skills that they will need in the future, the better off they will be.
Coding Helps Teach Critical Thinking Skills
We all want our children to learn to figure out problems on their own. Critical thinking is an important skill that needs to be learned at a young age. Learning how to code can help with critical thinking skills. As a child starts to understand how to figure out a problem when they are coding a program, it helps them understand how to figure out problems in general. This enhances their critical thinking skills.
A professional coder probably has one of the most stressful careers. I remember how long it would take me to find and fix coding errors while I was in school. A small error like leaving out a comma or accidently leaving out a space between variables would take hours to find in 200 lines of code. Coders are definitely a patient group of individuals; it’s a requirement for the profession.
We May be Falling Behind
No one wants to hear this, but the United States may be falling behind in the fields of technology and innovation. Many other countries are outperforming the US in digital literacy, and in fact, South Korea has been ranked #1 in the category. The United States didn’t participate in the assessment – the Programme for International Assessment – but it is speculated that the country would have ranked in about the third to middle section. A sad thing to contemplate, however, is that the last time a student from the United States was tested in their digital literacy was 1992. We have come a long way since then, but so have other countries.
If more courses in web design and software development are offered at the elementary and middle school levels, future competitors might be able to outperform countries like South Korea. Digital literacy is not something that you can become an expert in within a month. Especially when it comes to advanced languages like JQuery, Java and PHP. If elementary schools offered fifth and fourth graders the option of learning basic graphic and web design skills. Younger students would be provided with a core foundation that most people don’t receive until the end of middle school or sometime in senior high school. It would also be a way of incorporating a additional art program into schools. Currently, art in school is becoming less and less important. But web and graphic design is an art form and those who perfect their craft in this arena are artists. I dare you to look at the work of David Carson or Jon Hicks and not be impressed
Because of the necessity of these skills in the real world today, it is important that kids learn these skills along with the other necessities like reading and writing.
Learning Programming Means Better Jobs
Our job market is moving digital. One day not too far in the future the majority of the careers available will be tech based. Knowing how to program at an early age will help students get better jobs in the future. Sure, we know that jobs like working for Amazon may require technical knowledge; however, even jobs in the financial industry require a significant tech knowledge base. The more coding and programming a student know, the more likely they are to get a great job.
There are so many reasons that we need to start teaching our children programming. When learning any language, even a programming one, it is best to start young. In addition to being able to learn the language easier, the child will get a variety of great skills from it, as well.