Coding is becoming an essential digital skill in today’s classroom. Besides its technical utility in a digitally-focused world, learning coding by implication involves developing a number of other key skills such as problem solving, strategising, critical and design thinking, among others.
There are tons of platforms that offer educational materials to help you integrate coding into your teaching. In today’s post, I am sharing with you some of the best iPad apps you can use with young learners and elementary students to introduce them to the concepts of coding, computer science, and programming. Using these apps, kids will get to learn to code The apps using a wide variety of interactive and fun games and activities.
Kodable offers an interactive coding curriculum ideal for kids ages 4-10. Using Kodable learning materials, kids get to create and play their own games and explore the world of computer science in fun and engaging ways. ‘Kodable features age-appropriate games and activities that transition your kids from learning how to think like a programmer all the way to writing real code using our custom, built-for-kids coding interface!’
2- Scratch Jr
A great coding and learning app for kids ages 5-7. ‘By snapping together graphical programming blocks, children can make characters move, jump, dance, and sing. In the process, children learn to solve problems, design projects, and express themselves creatively on the computer. They also use math and language in a meaningful and motivating context, supporting the development of early-childhood numeracy and literacy. With ScratchJr, children don’t just learn to code, they code to learn.’
Lightbot introduces players of all levels and grades (K-12) to programming, coding, and computer science through puzzle-based games. ‘Programming Puzzles features 50 levels and 20 challenge stars to collect for when you want more of a challenge!’
This is a drag-and-drop programming tool developed by Google to help kids learn coding through self-directed play and guided challenges. ‘Basic puzzles teach the concepts of coding through playful project ideas, allowing kids to learn and explore all on their own. Bonus puzzles are added each week for endless entertainment and learning. Kids can confidently embark on their own coding adventures with their newfound knowledge, a dash of creativity, and robot buddies – Dash & Dot. For ages 8 and up’.
Tynker Junior helps young kids (ages 5-7) learn the basics of coding through fun and interactive challenges and puzzles. The app offers over 200 coding challenges and 2 project creation studios: Art and music studio (‘Generate math art and compose music using a sandbox environment that allows you to create programs using coding skills you have learned.’) and Animation studio (‘Make interactive animations and tell stories using a set of sandboxes that allow you to create programs with code.’)
PBS Kids Scratch helps kids learn and develop coding skills through engaging programming games and lessons. Games feature ‘characters from Odd Squad, Wild Kratts, Nature Cat, Arthur, WordGirl, Peg + Cat, and Ready Jet Go! The storytelling possibilities are endless with this creative coding app for children ages 5-8.’
Coding for Kids offers a plethora of interactive and fun games to teach young learners the fundamentals of of programming. ‘It teaches coding with 200+ fun games like firefighting, popping balloons or playing a dentist. Kidlo Coding helps kids improve their problem-solving skills, boosts memory and increases logical thinking skills and prepare them for school.’