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Coding & Problem Solving

Published on April 8, 2022 | Posted in  

People are free to see or interpret computer coding in very different ways. Just like a language such as English can be wielded very differently depending on who is writing or speaking it, coding bears the signature of whoever is at the keyboard.

Just like mathematicians can take different routes to arrive at the same answer, there is more than one way to achieve the same result via coding.

Real Coding Languages

Our online coding for kids classes emphasize lateral thinking and problem solving that offers immediate practical benefits, but it’s also a form of self-expression. Kids who sign up for RP4K coding lessons learn the same languages that professional coders use in the field to build apps like Netflix or videogames like Minecraft.

We teach kids programming languages for children as young as seven rather than use drag-and-drop programs like Scratch, which merely convey a sense of what coding is like. Naturally, young kids need lessons that are tailored and suitable for them.

But we believe that learning to think and problem-solve from a young age is beneficial and provides a strong foundation upon which they can build. We are proud to teach several coding languages that are used commonly in the field, like:

  • Python
  • Java
  • JavaScript
  • C#
  • C++

In the way polyglots describe thinking differently depending on what language they’re using to conduct their internal monologue, kids will sharpen and broaden their problem-solving skills as they develop further in a coding language and learn new ones.

Video Games as a Puzzle

Children are naturally curious, and they want to learn about the world around them. Usually, they need a real hook to keep engaged in a subject or problem. If they’re hooked, they’ll stay motivated to learn and absorb all they need to know until they achieve their goals.

RP4K centres our programming classes around creating, designing, and coding video games. Each child will have coded their own video game by the time the program is over.

It’s hard to overstate what video games mean to kids. You can tell by the way adults today look back with nostalgia and wonderment at the games of their youth that gaming has an almost mythological hold on some people.

Tapping into this is a very useful pedagogical tool that drives learning. On a more basic level, kids have a lot of fun!

For all the talk about preparing children for future jobs by giving them the STEM skills necessary to thrive, more than anything, Real Programming 4 Kids exists to ensure children have fun, first and foremost.

We also embed gamification concepts into our coding classes, using the same dynamics that keep kids hooked on playing video games to help them stay engaged in learning. Some video games involve solving logical problems. Learning to code games involves its own type of problem-solving and in that sense, becomes its own type of game.

Small Groups Support Students

Students need to get the right level of support from their teacher to learn new ways to think. There are many crucial new skills kids can build with coding, but not if they are competing with their peers to get their teacher’s attention and focus.

RP4K avoids rote lessons with old, stale curriculums. Instead, we’ve modified our lessons over the years to keep them fresh and updated, in keeping with the subject matter’s evolving nature.

Computer coding is never more alive than when children draw on their lessons to develop novel approaches to problem-solving. Getting kids to the point where they can improvise coding solutions and think on their feet in programming languages requires proficiency that comes with ample support and instruction.

To help, RP4K makes it a point to hire teachers who skew on the young side. It only makes sense that children learn how to code video games from instructors who were once in their shoes, playing video games as kids.

Teachers with overlapping first-hand experiences are relatable and make learning much more engaging and interesting. It’s better for a kid to learn how to code games from an undergrad in computer science who loves video games rather than a senior computer engineer who didn’t grow up in gaming culture.

Video games are pretty much to children what Christmas is to children — nostalgia incarnate. Teachers who are still in touch with this ineffable aspect of video games have infectious joy that makes learning a pleasure.

Woman at laptop, Python book of coding language on lap

Coding is a Logic Problem

People are wrong to say that computer coding is like a logic problem: it is a logic problem. Programming is basically the act of combining your knowledge of a particular coding language and how well you can wield logic to achieve your goal.

There are tasks you need to be done and some paths are better or more efficient than others. Multiple answers could all be correct.

Children learn mathematical concepts during their coding classes, because math is a fundamental part of programming. RP4K was founded by a mathematician, and we’re proud to teach a range of math concepts to kids, from integers, vectors, and even trigonometry.

Kids will learn to use the analytical and mathematical parts of their brains to create strings of code that achieve the designated tasks. Then, they’ll systematically debug it for inevitable syntax errors. Just because learning how to code video games, apps, and websites involves hard math skills doesn’t mean it doesn’t also require logic, too.

Most parents want their children to have fun, learn primary STEM skills that the workforce values, and absorb general lessons that help them in other unrelated disciplines. RP4K designs our classes to meet these goals in descending order of importance.

If you want to see whether RP4K lessons are right for your child, contact us to book a free trial lesson. We’re confident they’ll enjoy them because we’ve been in business for over two decades and have seen generations of coders go from being students at RP4K to teachers.

Get the hard programming skills and general, adaptive problem-solving abilities that come with learning to code by enrolling in RP4K’s online sessions.

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