mundens: The Brain, from the cartoon Pinky & The Brain  (Brain)

Finding the right product or motivation for your kid is the key. Some kids love making games. Others enjoy writing stories. One little boy I taught got very excited about "hacking" existing websites with Chrome Inspect Element tool. Another girl wanted to learn Java to make Minecraft mods. 

You don't need to be a professional developer to get kids started in programming. Many of the products include lightweight curriculums and roadmaps to help the kid learn more. One of the most important qualities of a programmer is the ability to figure out problems. Googling is allowed!

This is not a conclusive list - I'd love to hear more recommendations from you in the comments.

For the smallest ones (5-8)
For the elementary schoolers (7-12)
For the teenagers and beyond (13 -> )
  • Codecademy. Interactive exercises in the browser for Python, Ruby, JavaScript, HTML (full disclosure, I used to work here!).
  • Codeschool. Dive deeper into different programming languages. 
  • Dash. Learn to make websites with an interactive tutorial. 
  • Coursera. I liked the Startup Engineering course. 
Ruby for children (just because of Ruby)

Books and stories

Curriculum and community

  • Code.org has a very large resource list to try out.
  • Mozilla Webmaker includes tons of tools and guides for building the web.
  • CoderDojo is a global non-profit for starting a coding club for kids. 
  • DIY.org is a community for kids to learn to make things. 
  • CS Unplugged has activities you can do without a computer to teach programming fundamentals. 
mundens: Picture of Brad Pitt playing Tyler  Durden from Fight Club. My Hero (Howl)
Friday I saw SOAP, as I mentioned, but just thought I should add that [livejournal.com profile] holding_pattern was looking stunning! I had just been into Game Workshop, and thought that if all the gamers in there knew that such a hot miniature painter was walking past she'd have been mobbed by fan-boys, and [livejournal.com profile] grendel_khan would have had to use his ex-bouncer skills for body-guarding!

I spent most of Satyrday trying to get Apache to talk to Tomcat properly with virtual hosts, I still don't quite know why what I did works, while what should have worked didn't. Still, it's working now, and I will now have the basis for some serious development work at home.

In the evening [livejournal.com profile] evie_fae had me over to try and fix up a TNO phpBB issue. She had very nicely arranged to bribe me with a meal from [livejournal.com profile] jarratt_gray and whiskey, with the condition that the whiskey would need to be drunk with [livejournal.com profile] jarratt_gray.

But php is an ugly thing, and it's more than an hours work to even try to find out what a single page of the code is supposed to do, let alone what it's actually doing. php is to scripting what bad c code is to programming. In other words, when you see some it makes you think it will be faster to rewrite the whole damn application from scratch in a real progaming language, than to try and modify the existing code. So no fix yet, but I'll look some more. Uggh, I feel dirty after looking at such obfuscated and poorly structured code. Goes against all software development best practices.

(Shh, see the more I go on about it, the more whiskey I'll get )

[livejournal.com profile] jarratt_gray's Thai green chicken curry was extremely spicy and yummy, especially primed as I was by the piratical whiskey [livejournal.com profile] evie_fae had picked up. After dinner there was creativity all around as [livejournal.com profile] evie_fae put together her corset for a fitting and [livejournal.com profile] jarratt_gray gave a commendable impression of a graphic designer.

Tell ya what though, you can bribe with me corset fittings as well if you like! [livejournal.com profile] evie_fae is going to look superb in this one!

After making us guys drool at the posed cosrsety-goodness, [livejournal.com profile] evie_fae proceeded to walk all over us playing "Buzz". She was just too fast on the buzzer! And got what I believe was an all time high score in the seven thousands! And no, we were not being easy on her! Maybe I let her get away with eyelid-batting once during the Point Stealer round, but that made no difference to the final result, what's 250 points when she's two thousand ahead and the last round questions are worth 500 points each? As [livejournal.com profile] jarratt_gray said, next time we'll have to make sure she drinks more Baileys before taking her on!

Though it was worrying just how much the host, Buzz, was coming on to her during the game!

Walked back home down the hill and tried to call [livejournal.com profile] seraphs_folly but didn't get the numbers right, so went to bed, and had a marathon dream session, which I'll try to write up a bit.later.

Got up and shortly thereafter received an email [livejournal.com profile] mellific to say try calling again, which I did, and in the morning light managed to figure out the esoterica of international dialling, and so managed to chat to my love for almost half an hour. It was great to hear her voice and hear about her adventures in Japan and to hear that she was missing me, just as I was missing her.

That was the only problem with both Friday and Satyrday night, the others had their partners with them,.and mine won't be with me until November. (all together now! Awww!) Still it's happy making to know she's there, and I think it must be some sort of love when seeing other couples makes you happy for them, not jealous, and happy knowing that you have someone too, even though you won't have the physicality of her presence for a month or two.

Anyway I should go to bed now even though I really want to talk about [livejournal.com profile] drowninghail ripping some poor kids face off in [livejournal.com profile] superlate's game! :)

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mundens: Picture of Brad Pitt playing Tyler  Durden from Fight Club. My Hero (Default)
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