Should we be teaching ours to kids code? Hell yea! How do I know? I'm a teacher and I see much of the present curriculum just plain tedious, rote memorization. I also have witnessed the decline in creativity in the classroom, year after year it is whittled away. Not much left today, and even teachers who value it above all else, have had the wind blown out of their sails.
Every student in every school should have the opportunity to learn to code
This is not a new concept, it has been written about extensively. Teaching kids to code should go hand in hand with reading, writing, and arithmetic. IT IS THEIR FUTURE! We all know that we are living in a different world since the iPhone made its début 8 years ago. A totally different world - a world that has been turned inside out, upside down, backward, forwards & all around. Society is changing, studies predict that as early as 2020 we are going to be 1,000,000,000 short of coders. Computer science is among the highest paid career of college graduates. It is imperative that more kids take an interest and learn to code. Schools, educators, and parents everywhere need to be promoting this kind of classes or we are going to be left in the dark.
The following are 15 reasons given by the experts why our kids need to learn how to code:
1. Teaches you how to think
"I think everybody in this country should learn how to program a computer because it teaches you how to think."
— STEVE JOBS, THE LOST INTERVIEW
2. Achieve your dreams
"If you can program a computer, you can achieve your dreams. A computer doesn't care about your family background, your gender, just that you know how to code. But we're only teaching it in a small handful of schools, why?"
Dick Costolo - CEO, Twitter
3. We need talent
"Our policy at Facebook is literally to hire as many talented engineers as we can find. There just aren't enough people who are trained and have these skills today."
Mark Zuckerberg - Founder, Facebook
4. You won't be left behind
"One hundred years ago, people were faced with the choice of learning to read or remaining illiterate laborers who would be left behind as have-nots in a rapidly modernizing world. In the coming century, being able to command the world that will be thoroughly computerized will set apart those who can live successfully in the future from those who will be utterly left behind."
Yishan Wong - CEO, Reddit
5. Gives you superpowers
"I believe technology should give us superpowers. Everyone should have the opportunity to learn to think, analyze, and create with technology."
Hilary Mason - Chief Scientist, Bitly
6. Unlock creativity & open doors
"Every student deserves the opportunity to learn computer programming. Coding can unlock creativity and open doors for an entire generation of American students. We need more coders -- not just in the tech industry, but in every industry."
Mark Pincus - CEO and Founder, Zynga
7. Coding is the new literacy
"Code has become the 4th literacy. Everyone needs to know how our digital world works, not just engineers."
Mark Surman - Executive Director, The Mozilla Foundation
8. Prepare for the future
"To prepare humanity for the next 100 years, we need more of our children to learn computer programming skills, regardless of their future profession. Along with reading and writing, the ability to program is going to define what an educated person is."
Salman Khan - Founder, Khan Academy
9. Need for diversity and multiple perspectives
"We must work diligently to democratize computer science learning so that no group is denied access to this fundamental knowledge. Not only is this an issue of civil rights, but computer science as a field desperately needs diverse and multiple perspectives."
Jane Margolis - Senior Researcher and Author, UCLA
10. We all depend on technology
"Here we are, 2013, we ALL depend on technology to communicate, to a bank, and none of us know how to read and write code. It's important for these kids, right now, starting at 8 years old, to read and write code."
will.i.am - Musician/The Black Eyed Peas and Entrepreneur
11. Think about thinking
"Programming allows you to think about thinking, and while debugging you learn to learn."
Nicholas Negroponte - Founder and Chairman Emeritus of MIT's Media Lab
12. Be creative, problem solve and learn teamwork
"Are you creative? Do you love problem-solving? Is teamwork a strength? Do you want to have the power to change the world? If "yes" to all of these, then computer science - programming - is for you!"
Ed Lazowska - Computer Science & Engineering, University of Washington
13. Feel empowered, gain confidence
"Learning to code makes kids feel empowered, creative, and confident. If we want our young women to retain these traits into adulthood, a great option is to expose them to computer programming in their youth."
Susan Wojcicki - Senior Vice President, Google
14. It’s a necessary 21st Century skill
"All of the today’s kids will need—along with reading, writing, and arithmetic—a basic understanding of computation and the role that it plays across a wide range of disciplines. Coding is engaging and empowering. It’s a necessary 21st Century skill."
Jan Cuny - Program Officer, National Science Foundation
15. Help Humanity
"I think if someone had told me that software is really about humanity, that it's really about helping people by using computer technology, it would have changed my outlook a lot earlier."
Vanessa Hurst - Co-founder, Girl Develop It