Updated: Sep 11, 2020
We all know Bill Gates, the man behind the Microsoft empire who owns a net worth of 114 billion USD. But do you know when his journey towards becoming a tech visionary began? The first program he wrote was to a tic-tac-toe game, and he was 13 then.
Again, we're all familiar with Mark Zuckerberg and the story of the mighty Facebook. But do you know that he started learning to code when he was in middle school? He recalls his childhood and says, "I had a bunch of friends who were artists. They'd come over, draw stuff, and I'd build a game out of it."
Many thriving global leaders were early adopters of technology. They went to the same school as other kids, studied the same subjects, and took the same tests. It’s not the entire picture. They all learned to code when they were kids to build amusing computer games to play. Now, they do the same to solve significant problems in the world.
Coding for kids may sound intricate and complicated, but in reality, it's not. Kids can quickly learn to code and develop a problem-solving mentality at a very young age.
But why should every kid learn to code?
Coding is a lucrative career
According to a US Bureau of Labour report, a job requiring coding skills pays up to $103,560 per year. The demand will hike by 24% from 2016 to 2026.
Today, coders are in high demand, and there is a massive gap between demand and supply. As per the report of Code.org, there were about 2.4 million jobs in programming remaining vacant in the year 2018. And this figure is only continuously rising, demonstrating an ongoing demand for programmers in the tech sector.
Future jobs demand basic coding skills
Bots have replaced writers, and AI-powered virtual assistants are taking up the place of secretaries in law firms. Automation is expected to devour 50% of the existing jobs in the next ten years.
It's also intriguing to notice that only 5% of those jobs would be eliminated. The job scene is changing, but new roles would be replacing the existing jobs. 90 percent of the jobs would require digital skills -- those to solve problems, analyse data, drive insights and empower the world.
Tech giants like Facebook, Twitter, Quora, Adobe and Bloomberg now holistically assess potential candidates from a multifaceted perspective. While academic results remain a critical factor, it’s hands-on projects showcasing robust coding skills that make or break an applicant. As these project-based assessments become a new norm in the recruitment process, equipping your kids with coding skills will open doors to a plethora of career opportunities.
Coding blends logic and creativity in kids
In August 2020, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) organised a mobile app hackathon contest. Two five-year-old kids from Mumbai developed an app focusing on raising awareness of climate change, and lo and behold, they ended up placing first in the youth segment of People Choice category and grabbed a spot in the top 5 apps in Judges Award category.
In an interview, the students mentioned that the climate change revolution pioneered by Greta Thunberg had inspired them to educate smartphone users about how their actions impact the climate.
As parents, we might be surprised by the skills our kids possess and how quickly they can learn with the right guidance. Coding provides kids an excellent gateway to channel their creativity and reasoning to effect positive societal changes.
Coding has proved to be a must-have skill, as it is becoming a requirement for an array of professions. Aiding your kids with programming capabilities is an investment that will give them an unique long-term advantage. Even as your children pursue non-technical roles in business management, coding will undeniably help them perform better thanks to a host of interpersonal skills they pick up along the way.
Learning to code is as simple as learning any other skill or language, and it helps your kids evolve as a logical problem solver in our increasingly technology-dominated world. Take the first step today to guide their energy and manifest the technology our future desires.