Here are 3 things parents must know about coding as a compulsory graded subject
Coding is fast becoming a much sought-after job skill, in light of employers looking for coders to give their companies a competitive edge in the digital economy. Those proficient in coding have an array of well-paying career paths to choose from, including engineering, science, art & design, data analysis and information technology.
Primary School Students enjoying a class of Scratch
It is no wonder that there is a growing demand for kids to pick up this important skill. Here are three things parents should know about coding:
1. Many Secondary Schools have implemented coding as a graded subject
According to a recent Channel NewsAsia commentary “The Hidden Value of Learning How To Code” by Hady W Lauw, “knowing to code may help your kid achieve an edge over others when he or she enters the workforce someday”.
Plus, it helps them develop skill-sets to think about the world and go about problem-solving. As of today, 19 secondary schools teach programming at the GCE O-Level, and six IP schools or junior colleges offer computing as an A-Level subject. On top of that, schools such as Hwa Chong Institution and Temasek Junior College take their entire Secondary 1 and/or 2 cohort through graded classes such as C++ and Python.
Lauren, 14, (Methodist Girls’ School IB Programme) shares why she enjoys coding: “I made my own quadratic equation solver that literally spews out all the answers to my Math homework.”
2. Many students will find it difficult to pick up Coding
Many Computer Science undergraduates struggle with programming in university and these include the straight As students from A levels. Computational thinking, which is required to excel in programming, is very different from the traditional subjects (Math, Physics, Chemistry) which students are typically exposed to.
Although Computer Science at its core (and at the advanced level) is Mathematics, the Mathematics introduced in coding (Eg. Boolean logic, set theory, discrete Math, Combinatorics, Linear Algebra, Graphs Theory) can be daunting and difficult for many. That is why it is important for students to be taught using age-appropriate tools and styles, to inspire them to learn and truly understand the code.
Sarah, 17 (Hwa Chong International) who received an Honourable mention at the NOI in just less than six months of learning to code says: “My dad had signed me up and I attended my first lesson with practically no coding experience, just an interest in the sciences. Now I’m able to write simple games and programs, and, more importantly, am well into the lifelong journey of learning to code.”
Sarah Go, 17, receiving her Honourable Mention at the National Olympiad in Informatics (NOI) Competition.
Checkout Coding Lab®’s award-winning Python Meets Math curriculum for ages 13-16 here.
3. Getting a real headstart can make a huge difference
For many students, it takes time for the concept of programming to sink in. For instance, Bill Gates started learning coding at the age of 13 and Mark Zuckerberg built “Zucknet”, a program connecting his father’s home and office computers at the tender age of 10.
Mona, lead educator of Coding Lab® shares her experience: “When I first started coding in NUS High school, it took me a while to understand the concepts. Coding is something that takes time and practice to understand, and that understanding is not something that can happen overnight. Starting in High School gave me a much better foundation for my University courses.”
Most importantly, they must pick up Computational Thinking, the ability to break down a problem into smaller parts and giving the computer precise instructions to solve it. This powerful mindset stays with them for life, be it academically at school or at work in the future.
“Coding is very useful in school as I can get a head start on Algebra which I’m not supposed to learn now. I’m supposed to learn it only in P6,” -Jake, 9, Catholic High School (Coding Lab®’s Gifted Coders Programme)
Watch Jake’s Interview with Lianhe Zaobao here:
The two-time winner of the Best Coding Curriculum award (as voted by parents) by Parents World Magazine (2017-18), and winner of School Of The Year, Computer Science, Coding Lab® is a premier educational institution that teaches and empowers kids to code. Its award-winning MIT-inspired curriculum expounds on the Singapore MOE syllabus to further develop computational thinking, creativity of expression and confidence in kids, and puts a strong emphasis on inquiry-based learning along with the application of key mathematical concepts.
Coding Lab®‘s portfolio of clients include corporate holiday camps for close to 40 students from Cisco, to conducting HTML and Python training for students at Raffles Girls’ School and the National University of Singapore. Their students also won first place at the recent Inter-Primary Robotics Competition, held in conjunction with Brand’s Singapore.
Prize Collection Ceremony at the Brands’ Inter-Primary Robotics Competition (Nov’17)
Curriculum advisors hail from Japan, New York and all over the world. Rest assured that your child is in good hands with Coding Lab®’s award-winning curriculum, developed by an ex-MIT alumnus.
A Corporate code camp at Cisco headquarters, Singapore
P/s: Check our their latest campus at Parkway (Opening May’18), complete with Sea Views! Coding Lab® @ Parkway Parade – From May 2018
This June holiday, join Coding Lab®’s popular, award-winning camps for children.
When: 28 May – 22 Jun (There are also weekly classes year-round.) Who: Ages 4 to 16 years Ages 7-9 Ages 10-12 Ages 13-16 Where: Parkway Parade / Bukit Timah / Yio Chu Kang Price: $395 to $695
Primary School children can expect to be thrilled with their ever popular Scratch, App Inventor and TinkeringGarage workshops, where they will get to tinker with and program the latest gadgets, such as the mBot, micro:bit, and Makey Makey; or engage in slightly more advanced classes, where they get to create their very own Baymax – Your personal Healthcare companion.
For Secondary school children, serious learning starts with their proprietary Python meets Math programme, where your teen builds up a strong foundation in Computer Science (whether for compulsory classes at IP school, GCE”O”, GCE”A” levels) which also puts him in good stead for University level study. Who knows, with his training, he may yield a medal or 2 at the NOIcompetition!
“I am glad we found Coding Lab® as it has ignited my boy’s passion for coding — I was pleasantly surprised recently to receive WhatsApp messages from him which he had sent via code.” – Hui Li, Mother of Ian, 14 (Hwa Chong Institution)