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  #1  
Old 10-01-2016, 07:16 PM
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Getting a 7-Year-Old into Coding

I've explained to my boy that coding is the key to understanding how computers work and how he might one day make his own video games. He's quite keen to learn about it. We've already come up with a concept for a mind-blowing game loosely based on Clash of Clans.

So someone recommended me this

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It looks great in principle, but the two existing reviews on Amazon aren't positive.

So I thought maybe this:

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and one of these:

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Might be a better start. I guess he could just use any old keyboard/monitor with it....

Any advice or guidance from the BBS geek clique much appreciated!
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Old 10-01-2016, 08:04 PM
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scratch

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Old 10-01-2016, 08:07 PM
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scratch

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This.

Even Scratch Jr on the iPad is an even more basic version if you've a compatible tablet. I teach Year 2 and each of them were able to code a very basic game from 'scratch' using Scratch Jr. They go absolutely nuts for coding and it's certainly a skill that all kids need to know in years to come, those not knowing how will be at a significant disadvantage.

Best thing about Scratch is it's free.
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Old 11-01-2016, 05:58 PM
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The hour of code thing, sorry on phone but Google is your friend

It's got themed lessons like Frozen and Angry Birds
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Old 11-01-2016, 08:55 PM
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There is an iPad app called light bot which is great at getting them used to sequencing, loops and debugging or problem solving.
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Old 11-01-2016, 09:04 PM
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Leave the 7 year old child to do what they want. Please.
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Old 11-01-2016, 09:10 PM
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I'm fairly sure the OP indicated that the 7yo wanted to look further.
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Old 11-01-2016, 09:25 PM
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Leave the 7 year old child to do what they want. Please.
FFS
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Old 11-01-2016, 09:47 PM
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Old 12-01-2016, 04:09 PM
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I'm a Computer Science teacher so happy to help with suggestions...

Scratch is a good place to start. But don't just play with it - decide on a project (keep it small) and then work towards finding out how to do it. A simple chase and catch game (can do 2 player or AI controlled) is a nice start.

Racing games are also good fun (top down - draw the track, cars etc and then use the colour detection to determine the speed - faster on the track, slower on the grass etc).

These are good to use with Scratch too:


I personally would not buy a Raspberry Pi for a 7 year old. To do anything really fun with it (other than using it as a slow computer) you need to be a little older in my opinion.

Another good programming toy is Sphero. The normal version you pick in the shops is fine - use the Lightening Labs app to program it. Otherwise buy the education SPRK version which comes with a few extras

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Old 12-01-2016, 04:11 PM
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Forgot to say - To view the link you have to Register or Login has lots of good places to start too and many free tutorials for young children

I have a meeting with Kano tomorrow. Have heard good things, but not seen it in the flesh. Will let you know how it goes.
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Old 12-01-2016, 04:18 PM
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Years ago (80's) you had C-Robots which was very good. I've recently looked into doing a Programmable Robot game with a visual language like scratch.

To view the link you have to Register or Login is definitely a place to look and one of the games on their site which some young kids may like is

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If you are into developing something your self, there is To view the link you have to Register or Login in which you can use a web based frame work, and then run it in javascript to execute code your self.
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Old 12-01-2016, 04:46 PM
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Lots of good info, thanks guys.

Would certainly be interested in hearing more about Kano. Was told by one bloke that he knew some kids that were enjoying it, but Amazon reviews were rubbish.
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Old 12-01-2016, 05:17 PM
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Lots of good info, thanks guys.

Would certainly be interested in hearing more about Kano. Was told by one bloke that he knew some kids that were enjoying it, but Amazon reviews were rubbish.
One of the 3 reviewers on Amazon has just adjusted his review to 4*s rather than 1*.

Looking at the reviews, I'm unconvinced it brings much to the table other than what is already freely available - Scratch and Python! Shall see tomorrow I guess...
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