Today, most parents are worried about their kid’s screen time. But this digital era forces them to do it, to learn an ability as intricately related to on-screen activities as coding. However, several coding activities do not involve the use of a computer but still pass on the reasoning.
Coding and related coding activities are the alpha and omega of 21st-century abilities and are progressively making their way into national curricula, after-school programmes, and more and more parents are catching on by introducing their children to coding toys and tools at home. This article might be helpful for those parents who are surely thinking of the best way to approach the off-screen Coding Activities For Kids.
Coding will be a precious asset in the future job market, which is the language of the future. It's what makes technology work the way it does, and comprehending it allows us to get a better understanding and interaction with technology. Learning how to code through fun coding activities allows kids to enhance their other abilities – such as mathematical skills, logical reasoning, critical thinking, analytical thinking, as well as several key soft skills, like communication, collaboration, literacy (of media, tech), and leadership. Learn how coding contributes to their development in-depth in one of our previous blog posts.
The main advantage of learning to code is that, even if your child never becomes a coder, they will constantly employ the problem-solving, solution-oriented attitude that coding entails, along with an unwillingness to be discouraged by failures.
Many parents want their children to become immersed in coding activities, but they are also wary about screens, especially with younger children. We should encourage more productive relationships with screens. A screen merely makes the essential easier, and it also shouldn't be viewed as entirely negative. Learn how to approach screens productively by reading one of our blog pieces.
Smart electronic devices, or gadgets that are connected to a screen, are frequently used as coding tools. Although the screen is rarely the focus of attention, it serves as a useful intermediate. However, not all of the coding activities don't require a screen, and some even don't require any gadgets at all. Numerous coding activities imprint the ideas of coding deeply into a child's brain without the need for a single screen. Some of them are listed below.
Here they are:
- Code with chalk
Things Required: chalk, a water source (water gun, water squirter, etc.)
Make a 6x6 grid on a sidewalk or other concrete block. Assign roles to you and your child: one will be the commander, while the other will carry out orders. Color some of them with chalk – these will be special squares where you'll be drenched with whatever water-squirting equipment you've obtained. The commander will now have to direct the other individual with extremely specific, direct directives (move one square ahead, one left, two right). The person moving will receive a refreshing wave of water as soon as they tread on one of the squares.
Learnings: Conditioning (you will get watered down if you stand on a specific square) and sequencing (what command sequence is required to get to one of those squares?)
- Emoji emotions
Things Required: Colored paper, crayons, stickers, and whatever else you choose to use to personalize your emojis.
Cut out circles from yellow paper and use colored pens and crayons to sketch the expressions we're all familiar with from our electronic devices to make your own emojis. Then, by exploring what emotions emojis convey, investigate the logic behind their use. Makeup stories using only emojis, examine the various ways in which individual emojis can be understood, and hone your creative skills by assigning students to develop brand new Emojis with completely new emotions that you can create yourself.
Learnings: Emojis are essentially computer code. They're employed as ciphers, to transmit particular emotions, and we grasp what they imply based on a shared understanding of both emotions and their encoding into yellow sphere-like symbols. Coding isn't only about issuing orders; it's also about communicating and conveying meaning.
- Algorithm cups
Things Required: A page with a printable algorithm (which you can download from the website) as well as plastic cups.
An algorithm is similar to a recipe in that it contains stages that must be followed in order to get a specific result. In this situation, the recipe will be printed on a sheet of paper available on the website, which has symbols that show how to construct a pyramid or other structure out of cups. Make sure your children comprehend the symbols before assigning them a building activity.
Learnings: Algorithmic thinking is the process of seeking out the most effective and efficient ways to solve a new task using the knowledge and expertise we already have.
- If-then game
Things Required: A group of passionate and active children.
This is a fun variation on the classic "statues" game, in which one person chooses how fast and far the others can go by gazing at them or hiding their eyes. They freeze like this if he glances at them; if he doesn't, they move. In this version, children will act as if they are computers. Something will happen if you type a specific command. Children must agree ahead of time on the signals they will give to one another. You'll all fall asleep if I elevate my left arm. You will turn in a circle if I do. And so forth. The possibilities are unlimited, so get creative!
Learnings: The logic of if-then. It's the foundation of computers, thus it's incredibly useful for deciphering the reasoning behind issuing orders and witnessing the effects in real life.
- Computational thinking morning routine
Things Required: All you need is your regular morning routine and a printable morning routine sheet from the website.
Breaking things down into steps supports algorithmic thinking, as we've already covered. Another concept that every programmer should be familiar with is computational thinking. It goes like this: what do you do after you wake up, and in what sequence do you do it? How do you transition from one activity to the next (for example, from brushing your teeth to eating breakfast)? What would happen if these steps were changed, and what would be the result? What are the various variants of these steps? Finally, on a sheet of paper with symbols, you should have a design for your morning routine as well as an awareness of all the ways it could change or be modified.
Learnings: Transitions and decomposition It's the process of breaking down an issue into smaller pieces (decomposition) in order to find common patterns and apply a solution (algorithm) based on the similarities between the patterns. Begin by talking about your morning routine and breaking it down into steps.
- Jewelry coding
Things Required: Beads of various colors and a string to attach them to
If you've ever fashioned a necklace out of beads, you know how satisfying it is to wear your own work, regardless of how it turned out. This time, we're going to add some spice to the proceedings by using binary logic. Visit learn more about binary, go to the website listed above, but in a nutshell, binary is an alphabet made up entirely of 0s and 1s, with each order resulting in a different number. (Consider morse code, which is also a binary language with short and long tones.) Switch between two (or more) colors of beads to make out the individual letters on a string once you've determined what the letters of a name are translated to in binary (you may need to use nicknames for length reasons). And there you have it: your own secret message on a necklace.
Learnings: Binary code is a type of computer code. Because computers are constructed on binary, comprehending them is essential for anyone interested in computer science or coding.
These coding activities teach students the fundamentals of coding and programming. All of the logical principles are essential for a deeper grasp of programming and for inspiring children to be curious about how things function. Not only that, but they're also a fun method to bring kids and their parents together while watching their brains grow right in front of your eyes.
Not only that, but they're also a terrific method to bring kids and their parents together while also allowing you to watch as their brains develop in front of your eyes.