Should we teach all kids to code?

This is a comment I put on the blog post: We’re Not Ready To Teach Kids To Code: Think Kids Should Learn To Code? Teach The Teachers First. It said, “We need a paradigm shift in education before we even dream of making coding part of the curriculum.”

My response:

I don’t think we can wait. My answer to this is yes, you are right… but we have to do it anyway. We have to teach kids to code as a necessary part of that paradigm shift. Changes as big as this need to come both bottom up and top down, and we all have parts to play in making that happen.

We have to teach teachers to code so they know what it feels like to think that way. We have to change our institutions and curriculum to match our ideals. All of this sounds impossible, and yet, must be done.

I refuse to say it can’t be done and give anyone an excuse not to try. Are we completely, perfectly, ready? No. Must we do it anyway? Yes.

There will come a time when kids insist that the education they get at school at least meets the expectations they have developed for education outside of school, and parents like your mom will be there to make that case.

I’m not waiting – and from what I’ve read about The Estuary, you aren’t waiting either. So why say we aren’t ready?

In my new book, Invent To Learn: Making, Tinkering, and Engineering the Classroom, we make the case for programming as a necessary skill for students to understand the world around them, and tackle how teachers can learn to teach in this brave new world.


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