Learning tech skills through children’s books about coding is one of the smartest ways to prepare them for the future. Books are an amazing resource, because children generally love them, especially if they’re nicely illustrated.
Computers, mobile phones, tablets and other devices are certainly places where your child will discover and learn the most. Still, the habit of reading (physical) books remains as useful as ever. Books are fun, engaging, handy, and no app or software can replace a carefully crafted education book. Call us old-fashioned, but there’s something special about books – they not only provide information, but create an experience.
Learning about coding in schools
We’re living in a digital age. Almost everything is digitized and coding is the foundation of most processes. Thousands of lines of code stand behind this article, so it could appear on this blog for you to read and enjoy right now.
There’s no doubt that programming skills empower young people to freely create, invent, and make significant progress. Let’s be real – the sooner a child begins to learn how to keep up with the inevitably developing world, the better!
We’re pleased to observe the growing number of schools and educational systems that see the value of coding in children age seven and beyond. Subjects like computing and introductions to programming languages are now a vital part of curriculums in England, Australia, and the US, just to name a few.
Why should a 7-year-old learn to code?
Computer programming is a topic which currently gets a lot of attention. The main reason behind this is simply – starting from a sound of a digital alarm clock early in the morning and all the way to that late night scrolling through social media channels, we’re using some kind of software throughout the day. As times passes, children are being introduced to same systems early on in life.
A question “Is six or seven years of age too early or maybe late to learn programming?” is a completely valid one. Everyone knows that kids acquire languages pretty fast, and programming language is no exception. Under the age of seven we do recommend a relaxed, light approach to coding, without pressure, mainly to introduce children to this super-useful realm. By learning the basics of code, a child of seven years (and beyond) is preparing for education, but also – the future.
Furthermore, reading children’s books about coding in particular, helps the education process since it teaches them patience, discipline, and requires deep focus. Could you name skills more important than these, not only for education, but life in general?
With that said, let’s quickly conclude the main gains of programming for kids:
- Improvement of analytical thinking though visual experience
- Appreciation for books as a learning tool, but also as a special experience
- Staying on track with the world living in a dominantly digital age
- Empowerment to think outside the box and create new things
- Preparation for future jobs in tech
- Building of crucial skills: discipline, focus, patience, curiosity, fast learning through practice, problem solving skills
- Inspiration to want to learn how to code, by exposure to role models
Best children’s books about coding
Books awaken inspiration, curiosity, as remnants of a pre-digital age that won’t go out of fashion any time soon. What stands before you is a hand-picked selection of the very best children’s books for topics of basic computing, as well as programming languages for beginners.
They’re not only chosen because of stellar reviews made by parents personally, but their character-building value.
If you were looking for coding books to inspire positive, enterprising qualities in your child, then this is the only list of resources you’ll need. It’s created with seven, eight and nine-year-olds in mind, as this is by far the best age to start learning about coding.
1. Code-it Cody (The Clever Tykes Books)
Speaking of universal character strengths you’d love to encourage as a parent… This book is definitely our favorite! We all know that it’s not easy to raise a child in modern society. Luckily, storybooks such as the ones you can find at Clever Tykes, teach useful skills through moral role models.
Code-it Cody is a fictional, yet practical story filled with motivational insights. It inspires children to want to learn more about programming, while bringing a problem-solving attitude under the spotlight. Cody, the main character, is a smart boy fascinated with tech.
But, is the talent and will to learn enough for Cody to succeed?
Every single human being sometimes faces a challenge, with no knowledge on how to overcome it. The same happened to Cody, so he had to look for help from Mr Chip, a rather mysterious character. From these lines, your child will learn a lot about the importance of teamwork (Cody gets connected to other kids that also love tech and they truly excel together).
Another reason why we recommend this book is because it encourages empathy in children. Cody is hearing impaired, but he doesn’t let that get in his way! He never gives up and understands the power of knowledge, bravery and passion for what you do. In the book Code-it Cody, lessons on coding merge with wisdom, which blows us away every single time.
2. Learn to Program with Scratch: A Visual Introduction to Programming with Games, Art, Science, and Math
Any programming language (environment) has its qualities and downsides. Having this in mind, Scratch can’t really be used for high-level coding, but it’s excellent for learning, especially in the first years of elementary school. This platform is widely used to teach children how to code, using connecting (colorful and entertaining) blocks that build simple programs.
The book itself, Learn to Program with Scratch uses a fun, beginner-friendly approach to coding. Essential concepts are clearly explained and easy to understand.
Beside the interesting guidelines on how to use Scratch, your kid will also learn:
- How to use repeat loops that simplify various tasks
- What if and else statements are, plus several decision-making methods
- What are logical operators and how to also use them when deciding on a next step
- All about lists and variables, and how to properly store data
- Basic information about user input and what to do with it
- The essence of algorithms such as linear search, etc.
This book also provides instructions on how to handle hands-on projects. Focusing on the“practice makes perfect” principle that builds excellence in time, the book relies on illustrations, explanations, examples, colors (plenty of them!), but also exercises. These exercises inspire action, since there’s no progress without the actual practice.
As you can see, Learn to Program with Scratch is a perfect read just after you’ve set the foundation with Code-it Cody. It’s mainly technical and practical, while the first one sets the ideal mindset and core approach of a future tech-wizard.
After your little programming enthusiast has mastered the fundamentals with our boy Cody and then, how to build programs with colorful blocks in Scratch, it’s time to move on to more complex coding languages.
This handy book is built by an expert organization called Young Rewired State and is imagined as an essential guide to writing code. Remember how the first book we covered was based on an thrilling story and the second one on explanations with exercises? Now, the third one consists of six missions. Through each mission, your mini programmer will explore basic concepts, yet feel like it’s a game not a lesson.
Each mission is fun, guided by distinct characters like Professor Bairstone, Dr Day and Monk Diamond. The main goal of this game-like book is to stay safe from jewel thieves and of course, learn some highly practical programming at the same time.
It’s interesting that as a community, Young Rewired State focuses on real-life skills and a mission to grow techstarts of the future. We surely support such an inspiring mission, and advise you to add their book to your collection.
4. How to Code in 10 Easy Lessons: Learn how to design and code your very own computer game (Super Skills)
Like a cherry on a top of a delicious cake, we’ve chosen a game-building guide! Chances are that the first program your little programmer will want to create is a fun game that other kids will enjoy as well.
This book, How to Code in 10 Easy Lessons, shows a straight-to-the-point, step-by-step path to achieving a rather daunting goal. Designing and coding your own game is not an easy task, but somehow, this guide succeeds in making it simple and clear.
Each project leads your kid to the next super skill, needed to reach a desired goal. One step at a time, starting from the initial question of what coding really is, building a unique computer game turns into reality. Just like our second suggestion, this book also uses Scratch as a main, kid-friendly coding environment.
Time to learn some coding!
Understandably, the number of children’s books about coding, programming languages and computer skills in general is constantly growing. With this in-depth guide, our vision was to clear the fog and show you the best of the best, but also – in which order and why you should consider these resources. Without further ado, build your small, high-quality library and enjoy all those incredible programs your child will create!
Pssst …. got a recommendation?