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Noreen Claire

Python coding course for 7yr old?

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DS7 would like to learn Python coding. He already spends two hours a week with my father playing around with Scratch and robots and a bit of Raspberry Pi. He spends hours pouring over coding books. He's extremely bright, reads well, and is very driven when he's interested in something. I would like to find him an online Python course that he can work through mostly by himself, though I understand most courses will be aimed at older Learners. Does anyone have any recommendations?

Edited by Noreen Claire

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Code.org is free.  It's good, but sometimes a bit fiddly.  The easy levels are easy, but once it gets to some of the spirograph-like drawing ones then the child needs a pretty good handle on angles measured in degrees.  It is almost all drag and drop, so requires very little typing beyond inputting a single number into a text box.

Code Monkey.  A subscription based program with game-like levels.  This is what both of my older boys have advanced to after Code.org because it does require typing actual code.  It is fun, but sometimes challenging to get all the stars on the levels...plus itty-bitty typos and syntax errors can be frustrating...just like in "real" programming.

Python for Kids is a fun intro Python book.  My oldest went through it (with my help) after Code Moneky.  It requires actual programming in a Python shell instead of "playing" in a game environment.  Both DS and I found it hard to learn from a book, even though I think it was thorough and well written.  The explanations and example problems were fun ie. writing a program that tells a person what they should do if they encounter ninjas based on how many ninjas there are (when they should run away, when they should stay and fight, etc).  Examples in the book include creating and editing a wizard's shopping list (including snake dandruff :ack2: ), calculating how many gold coins a magic treasure machine will produce, figuring out how long it will take to flatten enough tin cans to build a spaceship, etc.  Plus lots of the example code entails playing with and printing really good jokes like, "Why do gorillas have big nostrils?  Big fingers!!" 🙄

At our house, Code.org is completed at ages 6-7ish, then Code Monkey around 8ish and then Python for Kids around 9 (and it was still quite a challenge, and required a lot of support and scaffolding, then).

Wendy

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