Coding is a valuable skill that can help you in almost any industry. From programming to web design, coding knowledge will make your career path much easier and more lucrative. The question for many of us is when should we start? When do kids learn to code? Is there an age where it’s too late to pick up the skills?
There are many people who have been pushed to start coding at a young age. Some of the most successful entrepreneurs in the world made their fortunes on code. Bill Gates, Steve Jobs and Mark Zuckerberg all started programming when they were children! However, not everyone wants to be an entrepreneur and some people just want to get into coding so that they can make more money for themselves or their family. So what is the right age to start? Here’s what you should consider before jumping into coding as a career choice:
- What is your desired goal? Are you looking to be a professional programmer or are you hoping for something less intensive like developing apps for fun on the side?
- How much time can you dedicate to learning new skills, will it be full-time or part-time?
Why do we ask this question about age and not other things? The answer lies in what programming actually entails. Programming requires logic and analytical thinking which means that these tasks require some degree of maturity. That’s not to say that children CAN’T learn how to code but they may need more guidance from adults than is necessary with other subjects such as math and English language arts. Additionally, certain aspects of coding rely heavily on having good problem solving skills – children in the early elementary grades may not yet have developed these skills.
What does this mean for you? It means that if you’re a professional programmer or are looking to become one, then age is less important and more relevant when programming as part of your profession, but it’s probably worth waiting until at least middle school (age 11) before jumping into coding just for fun because younger children might need more help getting started than adults do. However, once they’ve reached an appropriate level of maturity with their other subjects we encourage them to try new things.
If you don’t want to take on all-or-nothing commitment but would like some guidance while working on projects then consider taking online courses through sites which provide free or low-cost courses on programming.