Top Coding Languages for Kids to Learn

Learning Programming and Coding for Dummies

Coding is undoubtedly helpful in developing modern skills and teaching advanced subjects to kids. It develops and improves problem-solving, critical thinking, creativity, resilience, persistence, computational thinking, confidence, and much more. 

It brings a massive change in kids and helps them achieve academic success. The best part is that they enjoy coding and celebrate healthy outcomes. Therefore, parents, teachers, and guardians want their kids to learn coding languages. 

But the real question is what programming languages kids should and can learn and how. There are dozens of programming languages, so it becomes difficult to choose the right one for the kids. We are here to answer these questions and list some of the top coding languages for kids to learn. We will share some effective ways to learn primary coding languages while having fun.

1. Intro to Coding Languages

1) Scratch

Scratch programming language is one of the top coding languages for kids to learn. Due to its simple block-based coding and visual interface, kids can easily program various robot toys, music, games, stories, etc. It makes coding a lot easier and lets kids enjoy what they are doing.

It is specifically developed for kids that are 8-16 years old, and there is also a ScratchJr, which is suitable for 5 to 7 years old kids. Many companies have implemented Scratch and ScratchJr in their toys and products to teach kids coding in an easy way and help them enjoy the results.

Beginners can easily get started after watching a few tutorials. They just have to drag and drop the block codes and make simple changes. It is one of the most common programming languages used in schools.

2) Python

We have discussed Scratch, which is an easy block-based programming language, but it has some limitations. It is good for getting started, but kids will have to switch to a text-based programming language later.

Python is one of the easiest text-based and top coding languages for kids to learn. For a long-term goal, it is the perfect language because it can lead to a professional career as a Python developer. It can be used for websites, data science, online tools, games, AI, cybersecurity, robotics, animations, etc. 

For kids seven years and above, Python is an ideal programming language, but they will need time to master it. It is quite user-friendly and easy to learn, and the best programming language for beginners.

It requires a few lines of code, which looks like normal text. For instance, in C, C++, and many programming languages, it is a must to declare the type of the variable, but in Python, you can create a variable without declaring its type; the language is intelligent enough.

Kids would love the language once they master it. They can do almost anything with this powerful programming language and get ready for the future.

3) MicroPython

MicroPython is a special programming language or implementation of Python 3, specifically for programming microcontrollers, I/O modules, and embedded hardware. It can be called a subset of the Python programming language.

It is a bit different from Python in terms of syntax. If kids want to dive into robotics, microcontrollers, and low-voltage applications, MicroPython could be an excellent choice. They can make different robots and have fun with their creativity. They can start with blinking LED lights and then create advanced programs.

Kids can start working with MicroPython in elementary school or in high school. It is a great language for little innovators. Some robot toys also use MicroPython to build a foundation for kids.

4) Arduino C

Arduino is an open-source and free software and hardware. 

The hardware is a board that contains an Atmel chip, and it makes it easy for the user to read & write signals and code the chip as required. It can be called a development board that allows you to code and make different types of devices using different modules. On the board, you will see various pins, components, a microcontroller, a power connector, a serial connector, and various other things. It is like a small computer that contains everything in one circuit.

For coding an Arduino, you need the Arduino IDE, which is the software. The language used to program the board is C++, but it has its own syntax, functions, and methods. 

Arduino C, or the Arduino language, is quite beneficial for kids. They can learn to program simple robots and I/O modules and then work on advanced projects. The language can take the coding skills of the kid to the next level.

Most of the STEM robots and toys that are made for coding are powered using an Arduino. Thus, you can also code them through Arduino coding. Kids that are 11 years old or above can learn Arduino coding and implement it on the board. The best way is to get a STEM robot toy that contains both block-based and Arduino coding to make everything easier for beginners.

5) C++

C++ is a bit of a difficult language compared to Python, Ruby, and other top coding languages for kids to learn. But it has its own perks; it is an advanced language that has been used to develop browsers, operating systems, games, applications, etc. 

An 8-year-old or older can easily learn this language and get started. It will take a few years to understand object-oriented programming, data structures, and advanced programs. However, if a kid learns C++, it will be quite easier to understand Arduino programming and master it.

But the problem is that usually, STEM toys do not use C++, so if you want your kid to learn it, you might need a simple C++ IDE to write code and compile it. 

2. How to Help Teach Kids to Code 

2.1 Introduce STEM Toys 

Coding is easy to learn, but kids might not find it interesting in the beginning. They might get bored, and it is perfectly normal because they are attracted to physical games, video games, short videos, social media, etc.

STEM toys are the best to teach coding to kids. These toys are interactive and interesting, and kids can learn while playing with them. This way, they do not get bored and enjoy the results of coding.

There are various types of STEM toys available, and all of them teach various skills and subjects to kids. But STEM robots are specifically made to teach coding in an interactive way. These are like cars and robots that compel kids to learn to code.

Robot toys are specifically made for kids and can teach coding very well. Kids can get started in no time and assemble the robot after looking at the instructions. Then, they can try simple codes, which are usually block-based codes. The best part is that once kids master simple coding languages, they can migrate to advanced coding, such as Python and Arduino. It is an incredible way to teach coding to kids and make the process easier for parents and teachers.

2.2 Some STEM Robot Toys to Teach Coding Languages to Kids

a) mBot Neo

mBot Neo is one of the simplest robot toys to teach the top coding languages for kids to learn. It is a beginner-friendly robot for 8-12 years old kids. 

The robot engages the kids and helps them learn to code while playing. It develops critical thinking, problem-solving, creativity, and persistence. 

The best thing is that kids can code the robot and interact with it. They see the results of their coding, which makes them happy and boosts their confidence. They can get started with Scratch or block-based coding. After that, they can switch to Python3 or Micro-python to dive into the real code.

It can teach AI, robotics, IoT, and data science. These skills are in high demand and can build a bright future. 

Makeblock mBot Neo: Beginner-friendly Coding Robot Kit

b) mBot Ultimate 

mBot Ultimate is a 10-in-1 robot-building kit that makes kids master robotics and coding. It is a vast kit, so kids can try their creativity and make a wide range of robots. It is quite interesting, engaging, and interactive and helps kids learn to code while having fun.

The robot can be programmed using Scratch language, which is good for beginners. Children that are 12 years old or older can enjoy this incredible kit. After mastering the scratch coding, they can switch to Arduino C/C++ or Python. With that being said, it builds a perfect foundation and helps them learn advanced coding languages.

Makeblock mBot Ultimate  10-in-1 Robot Building Kit for Robotics/Engineering/Programming Learning.

c) mBot Ranger

The mBot Ranger is a 3-in-1 robotics kit that can be assembled as a robot tank, racing car, and self-balanced car. It can run on any terrain like a boss. 

There are eight presets already available for kids to get started. They can use these preset codes to play and learn. It supports block-based coding, and kids can switch to Arduino C to enhance their coding skills. Moreover, there are additional robot kits available to experience a variety of robots and boost creativity. 

Alt: Makeblock mBot Ranger: 3-in-1 Robotics Kit for Building Robots from Scratch

d) mBot Mega 

mBot Mega is a robot car that rotates 360 degrees and goes in every direction. It is a smart robot that can inspire kids to learn to code.The robot can be programmed using Scratch programming language, Arduino C, and Python. Therefore, it is suitable for learning beginner to intermediate-level coding. It comes along with three presets for beginners to make coding easier and get started in no time.The best thing about the robot is that it is perfectly matched with Raspberry Pi, which makes it more functional. Kids can use the development board and take their coding skills to the next level.

Makeblock mBot Mega: Smart Remote Control Robot Car for Kids to Learn through Play