Enlightech Coding and Computer Lessons
At Enlightech, we want to equip the next generation of computer programmers. Coding and computer literacy are an integral part to your child’s education, and yet in South Africa many schools offer little or no education in this area. Coding, in particular, has been hailed the literacy of the twenty first century, and globally there is a movement to see programming being taught in schools. However, the South African government has yet to provide even a basic computing curriculum for primary school aged learners. Enlightech offers lessons which are in line with global trends in information technology education, equipping children for the technological world in which they are growing up.
What is coding?
You may have heard people talking about coding and citing how important it is for our children to learn how to code, but not have any idea what it is! Coding, or computer programming, is the process of creating computer programs. The web browser you are using to view this website, the operating system on your phone, computer or tablet, and the game which you enjoy playing on your smart phone are all computer programs which have been created by people who know how to code. Children become very excited at the thought of being able to create or recreate games, and our coding classes take this inherent excitement to learn and expand it so that pupils become proficient in creating many different types of computer programs.
Why learn to code?
Coding does not only have value for your child’s future, but also has some very real and important educational outcomes for today:
Computational thinking and logical reasoning
When children begin to learn how to code, they are invited to begin thinking in a logical, step by step manner. This is another way of describing ‘computational thinking’, which allows children to organise and communicate their thoughts in a logical and rationalised way. Creating a computer program requires careful planning and working according to a logical sequence of events, and learners become practiced in this important cognitive skill.
Debugging is the process of finding and fixing problems in your computer program
Children are inherently creative and get excited about using their creativity to make their own computer programs. Coding encourages creativity in both the design of programs, and the way that they use their existing knowledge to achieve their goals when writing code. As children progress in their programming abilities, a whole world of creativity is opened up to them in a way they have not experienced before.
When coding, children learn how to make their objects move at different speeds and angles
An algorithm is a step by step set of instructions used to achieve an objective or solve a problem
An inherent part of learning to code is practicing problem solving. Any programmer will tell you that ‘debugging’, or finding and fixing the mistakes in your computer program, is one part of programming that occupies a large portion of their time. When coding, children learn how to find mistakes by working carefully through their programs, and solving the problems that they find. The method of problem solving used in coding translates to being used in other areas of their education.
Design mode is used for children to create their own programs by adding different backgrounds and characters
Cross curricular benefits
Coding can be highly beneficial for both mathematical and language development. The logical thinking skills required for coding translate into maths skills, and learning the language of coding and how the language is constructed will ultimately help develop language skills.
Learning how computers work
Coding teaches children what is going on ‘underneath’ the interface that they interact with every day on their tablet or computer. They therefore become confident technology users, with a depth of understanding that may put their parents to shame!