Technological advancements are happening in our lives involving everything around us. Whether we have consciously taken a note of them or not, technology has made life so much simpler. Just take a look at iPhones and Android devices and what they can do. They are powerful mini computers in the palm of our hands, which we use everyday to solve our daily computing needs. From checking for the weather right when we wakeup every morning to getting help with homework to using apps like Schule or any other pocket scheduler for that matter to organize and manage your daily tasks for school, college or home.
Siri, Alexa, Bixby, and Cortana are like the childhood buddies for today’s generation. Trying to figure out a problem and simply picking up your iphone and saying “Hey Siri…”. Seems familiar, right!!!. Some may argue that they don’t like the intrusion of these digital voice assistants in their life and I agree to some extent.
The point here is that, these are some examples of technology everyone can easily recognize and connect with. Though if we want to talk about more technological advancements we can bring in self driving cars, artificial intelligence, robotics, genetics etc but that’s a topic for another day, which I plan to write about in the near future.
“So why should my child learn to code?”, you may be thinking and what does it have to do with any of this.
With these technological advancements around us, you really don’t need to be a data scientist to say that this is where most career opportunities are going to be in the coming years and decades (I wouldn't disagree if some of you know boys who want to grow up to be Messi or Ronaldo). Software Engineering jobs are growing every year and there are not many people to fulfill them. Coding is a skill that is increasingly in demand if we were to compare with few years or a decade ago.
Big tech companies like Apple and Microsoft have been advocating this for a while that everyone should learn to code.
It’s doesn’t matter if you want to be a doctor or a lawyer, being technology literate or programming literate will help you stand out.
There is no denying that coding helps develop your analytical and reasoning skills. Developing critical thinking, analytical reasoning skills are the most important skills children need today to be successful in the future. It’s not about the career you choose and doesn’t matter if you don’t want to be a programmer or Software Engineer. This skill will help a child succeed in every profession whether you decide to become a doctor, lawyer, teacher, dancer, chef, athlete, etc. Every profession demands people who are smart and know how to apply these skills and strategies to their profession every day.
Now there may be other ways of developing analytical thinking like by solving puzzles, playing games with strategy and what not. If that’s what you want to do, sure you can do that too but that may not be something you can brag on your resume, right.
Looks good on your resume
Coding is becoming like a second language these days. You may already know English, Spanish, Mandarin or French from your school curriculum but you may be expected to know Python, Swift, Java, Java Script or at least some understanding or HTML/CSS. It shows prospective colleges and employers how dedicated you are towards self development and learning. How much value you can add to their organization if your were to be selected and if you are in a technology related field of study, then it’s definitely a must. Even for a Biology student, areas of Biotechnology and Pharmacy are about research and innovation by building leading edge programs and techniques to overcome world problems.
Days of just having a strong GPA and good academic record were already long gone.
With the growing competition, it is becoming more and more important to stand out in the crowd. Your resume should speak for you and it’s your first impression.
When you think about “startups”, what comes to your mind. Instagram, Facebook, Uber, Whatsapp….
These were once startups and tuned into billion dollar organizations. Created by normal but smart individuals, who saw a problem or something that didn’t exist in our community and decided to solve and create it.
These are some examples of technological innovations that lead to entrepreneurship. This is something you can do with little to no money and all you need is an understanding of technology and some programming literacy.
Not knowing what’s possible
If you don’t have the right tools, you don’t even know what you can do with them. It’s like if you are given a task without telling you anything and without any tools, then probably you will be lost thinking, what to do and where to start. But if someone gives you a hammer and a chisel, you would probably find something to use them on.
Giving the right tools to our children at the right age is becoming more and more important. It’s going to prepare them better for the future that is coming and hopefully they will thank you day.
It’s not hard
Thinking where to start may become overwhelming for a child or even a parent who is not in a related field but trust me, it’s not hard and definitely not impossible. With so many free tools available these days, there are literally endless options. If you want to follow a well designed curriculum Udemy is a great place to start and most tutorials I have seen, cost around and sometimes under $10. Once you have gained an understanding of the prerequisites and achieve a beginner level, you can search through Youtube, which is literally a gold mine of knowledge with step by step videos for almost anything and everything for free.
Where to start
With so many options and coding languages to choose from, the next question coming to your mind might be, where should I start, what’s right for me and what will make sense for a particular age. What’s hot in today’s tech world and will it be hot 5 years later when my child goes to college or gets his first job. To address this, I will write a comparison of various programming languages, give you an industry insiders perspective and make sure to address the topic to the best of my ability.
Till then, Ciao.
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