Kids Get Coding – Our Digital World

We live in an ever increasing digital world which sees libraries, early education services and schools having a greater focus on STEM.  STEM refers collectively to science, technology, engineering and mathematics and promotes the development of problem solving, creative thinking and critical analysis skills.

There is a broader focus on STEM compared to when I was at school and it is no longer just about being for “Nerdy” people, STEM is for everyone.  Australia has a national strategy in place to invest in positive learning experiences for children aged 3-5, and providing activities for families to engage and have fun with STEM.  There are many ways at home that you can being sharing STEM with your children whether they are toddlers, preschoolers or school aged and one way is through books which brings me to today’s book review.

IMG_1766.JPG                  Kids Get Coding: Our Digital World by Heather Lyons and Elizabeth Tweedale
Illustrated by Alex Westgate   Published by Wayland   Date: 2016

Getting started with coding and understanding technology can be overwhelming, especially if you weren’t born as a digital native like today’s children are.  This coding book explains to children about different parts of a computer, about bytes and terabytes, document types and understand different words associated with a digital world.

This book is part of the Kids Get Coding book series and are easy to understand for both the child reader and the adult that may be working through the book with the young reader.  Throughout the whole book the authors continually explained what terms mean.  I also found the words to remember at the back of the book well defined and a good choice of words as the readers knowledge of coding develops.

The Data Duck is on each page and gives little tips of information such as I like to include my name and information about what’s inside my file.  There are also practical exercises throughout which assist with the learning process by using the knowledge that has been learnt throughout the book. The authors have clearly put a lot of thought into these exercises because they have include a lot of matching, making flip books and associating relationships between words; all exercises that school aged children would have done before.

The authors have done a good job at assisting the reader with relating to the content, for example they talk about not letting the desktop on the computer get messy like their bedroom does.

coding1.JPG

The authors are the co-founders to the Blue{shift} website and the they have linked the activities in the book with the website.  If you have an interest in STEM the website is useful to look at.  It gives examples of children’s coding work and will assist the young reader of this book and others in the series of what potential there is for children such as themselves.

Even though I am confident with computer use I learnt some information about bits and bytes, as well as finding some explanations useful that will help me engage with children about STEM more easily.  I recommend this for anyone (not necessarily children) with no knowledge of coding because the information is clear, concise and short in length (so it doesn’t feel overwhelming).

If you have a website or books to recommend let me know in the comments section, I would love to hear from you.

Further Online STEM initiatives:

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