The EU-led Code Week is well underway but, for those unaware of even the basics, where can you go to learn? These fine resources should help you out.
There’s a strong push towards getting coding into the psyche of European citizens as we sit on the precipice of what will become, inevitably, a world so intrinsically digitalised that casual knowledge of programming, at the very least, will soon be a must.
So Neelie Kroes’ Young Advisors went about setting up Code Week, to help promote the subject for both adults and youngsters, the latter of which, as with all technological advances, have a genuine headstart.
So where can you go to get a leg up? Well, here are some resources made for beginners young and old, with the last three a bit more advanced:
- Codecademy: If IT company’s can blend two words together to create a brand name, then so can educational companies. Codecademy was set up in response to the realisation that today’s school systems don’t really reflect what’s happening in the tech world right now. It’s such a good resource, in fact, that a colleague in here swears by it. Oh, and it’s free.
- Scratch ode to code: Set up specifically to celebrate this Code Week, Scratch ode to code is a multilingual tutorial. It’s very well laid out and captures the basics very well. It’s targeted at eight-to-16-year-olds but, to be honest, suits my entry-level needs quite well.
- Angry Birds Fun Learning: This is for kids aged three-to-six, set up by Funlearning.com. As the name suggests, it combines coding education with the immensely popular Angry Birds game. It’s more a platform for a classroom than a way to brush up on your own personal skills, but it’s got the right idea.
- CoderDojo: A favourite at Silicon Republic, CoderDojo is a vast network of coding classes, all over the world. They are volounteer-led and act as a way of getting kids interested in programming, while introducing them to their peers. The CoderDojo website features a variety of information for parents, kids and volunteers looking to start their own coding club for children. Part of the website is also a list of resources that can be used to teach a variety of programming languages to different age groups.
- CodeMonkey: You’ll gather a theme from most of these resources. By linking the programmes to games, it helps keep youngsters interested. It also helps keep me interested. I spent 10 minutes messing around with this and I managed to save loads of bananas from that dastardly gorilla. I’m learning. “Write code. Catch bananas. Save the world!”
- Pocket Code: This is an Android app that you download and, within it, learn how to create games. Code Week suggests Skydiving Steve as the ideal starting point to get your learning groove on.
- LightBot: Another programme which was set up to promote the ‘Hour of Code’ celebration earlier this year, LightBot is a browser service that lets you learn the basics of coding through problem-solving.
- edX: MIT and Harvard run the edX service, which has interactive classes to get those a little bit more advanced up to the next level.
- Udacity: Online learning is where’s it’s at, really, with Udacity another avenue to get classes over the internet.
- Coursera: I’ve used Coursera for things other than coding, with its online classes covering pretty much everything. Like the two above, through partnerships with educational institutions, it can bring classes to the masses.
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