If you have a child and think that it’s a good idea for them to learn computer programming, or if you are a kid and you want to get into coding, you’ve probably been wondering:

In 2020, what’s the best programming language for kids to learn?

Sometimes I really like to over complicate things, which is why I’m making this long video for you to watch.

But simply put, the answer is JavaScript (by the way that’s a language different from Java).

Okay, but now if you actually want to hear if JavaScript is also the right answer in your particular situation, and why not Python, Java, C++ or C#, and how you can get started learning JavaScript today in a way that’s fun and easy, then keep reading or watch the video below.

When I mention to an older person that I teach kids coding, their response is often

“Oh, I learned coding! Back in my day it was Fortran and punch cards”

So clearly, you don’t want to end up like this. Whatever all these people telling me this exact same story  have learned is outdated, they can’t remember any of it, and it doesn’t really seem to be useful, other than a fun little story that you can tell someone that you just met.

So when it comes to deciding on what programming language kids should learn, there are several factors to consider:

First of all, since we’re talking about kids, usually around 10 years old, we have to assume that they will be using their skill professionally in another 10 years from now.

Now, you can make some educated guess about the future, but probably not a very accurate or any certain predictions.

So looking at the languages that are currently popular, and maybe the ones that are on the rise, that can help you make this type of prediction.

But overall, you just end up with the same 5 to 10 languages, that you’ve already heard about anyways, since they are, well, pretty popular…

 

So, let’s go deeper.

Because really, underneath the whole question lies a pretty absurd assumption, which is something like “we’ll teach kids coding so that they can use this exact programming language in 10 years from now and secure a job where they will only use this one language  for the rest of their life”

Well, that is definitely not how any of this works.

It’s important to acknowledge 2 things about coding:

Number one: Coders never stop learning. There is always some new technique, some new library, an API, or some existing project that you have to work yourself into, and learn about. You have to read documentations, reference materials, and you’ll simply be constantly learning.

Which brings me to point number 2: Coding is all about problem solving.

And sometimes, solving a problem will require to switch programming languages, and exchange the underlying technology of a project, to actually get it to work.

So, really, if we teach kids this skill of problem solving in the technology or in the coding domain, they’ll be set up for success, regardless of what language they learn.

 

And that said, one language to the next programming language is not even all that different. An if clause is an if clause, a for loop is a for loop. Each language has their own specific syntax, meaning that one might use a semi colon, another uses a comma instead. But overall the different languages are almost more like “accents” or dialects, and not all that “foreign” from each other, like languages would be, right?

Once again, the real skill coders have to learn is knowing when to use an if clause, or when to use a for loop.

By now, we’ve cleared a lot of assumptions about what it means to learn coding, but not really an answer yet about what language to eventually use.

When considering that we’re talking about kids learning here, we want to make that sure it’s fairly easy, rewarding, and motivating to do.

Now since there’s not a huge difference in how difficult each language is, the main difference is in “how quickly can you get to hello world”

Hello world is everyone’s first program. Creating a program that simply displays the message hello world, or any other message that you like.

And for JavaScript, in combination with HTML, this takes only 3 lines of code and can be done in as little as 5 or 10 minutes.

Most computers are already set up to create and launch JavaScript based programs.

Unlike Java, C++, or Python, where you first have to download and install compilers, special types of code editors, and then runtime libraries, and who knows what else, right?

Since kids want to learn coding, and don’t want to learn how to research the internet for just the right version of the compiler that works with your machine, and how to troubleshoot if the installation fails, … Forget all of that! We wanna do coding, right? And JavaScript is the best choice for that, because there are none of these problems.

Another advantage of JavaScript specifically, is that it’s very high level. That means it won’t take much code or effort to get something to show up on the screen that’s really meaningful.

See, when I work with kids, I want them to create things that have buttons, or video games that they can actually see and use. Something cool and exciting, something tangible. I don’t want to do boring Math exercises and hexadecimal to binary conversions that are only happening in the console, and everything is text based.

So JavaScript and HTML makes it very quick and easy to create meaningful things, that have a real graphical representation. Once again, all of that happens without the difficult finding, downloading, and installing of some type of library.

 

So I hope you see why JavaScript is such a great choice for kids to learn, and to work with.

It allows you to write real code, quickly, and get actual hands on experience, and you can skip right to the good stuff, rather than to be bogged down by boring things before you can finally get started making something cool.

Remember, you can start learning how to make your first video game in JavaScript today on my website codeclasses4kids.com

It’s fun, rewarding, and easy, try it out right now. Just visit cc4k.co to get started.

 

Now I want to mention 2 potential reasons why JavaScript might “not” be a good fit for you.

Python is actually a close runner up, mainly for the reason of how popular it is with large tech companies.

But, honestly, every tech company that has a website also uses JavaScript, so we can’t really say JavaScript is irrelevant.

And once again, this assumes that you’ll be getting a job as a python programmer, which, like I already mentioned, is probably not how things will work out.

 

So the only reason why you shouldn’t get started in JavaScript is if you MUST make something that can not be done in JavaScript, for example an iPhone app, an Android app, some program that requires read and write privileges to the computer that it’s running on, like saving files, or something related to robotics where you’ll be interacting with a lot of hardware.

If you MUST start with any of those, JavaScript won’t get you there fast.

But, if you’ve never coded before, why spend days trying to figure out how to even get started making a “Hello world” iPhone app, when you can just make a “Hello world” JavaScript program in 10 minutes or less.

And in that process you can really see what coding is actually like.

Once again, everything you learn when coding in JavaScript will absolutely help you become a better problem solver. And if any of the types of applications I mentioned appeal to you, like iPhone apps, or robotics stuff, or anything with saving files, well, once you’ve learned a little bit of JavaScript, you’ll have a much better understanding of how you can actually solve the problems that you need to solve when making those types of applications.

That means making your first iPhone app will be much easier, after you’ve already made your first JavaScript program.

 

I hope that makes sense, post any questions that you may have below in the comments. Of course like this video and subscribe to my channel, but most importantly:

Go to cc4k.co today and learn how to make your first video game and become a successful expert coder.

I look forward to seeing you there!