Thursday, September 10, 2015

How Young Should We Start Teaching Computer Science?

The other day I read about a new book in the works for teaching Boolean concepts to babies. Yes Babies. A computer scientist is writing a book about programming for babies Seriously? Apparently. In fact:
The Kickstarter campaign has raised almost half of its funding goal. Stretch goals include two more books in the Computer Science for Babies series—Counting in Binary for Toddlers and Functions for Tots, both targeted at older children.
Next up is a new project for buildable programmable robots for students as young as 5. StartRobo is launching their Kickstarter "soon." They have a cool YouTube video.

But I wonder – do we really need to start this young? And even if we do will these tools make a difference?

5 comments:

Mike Zamansky said...

But there's money to be made and in all the hype we can trick ourselves into thinking that we're doing good.

Garth said...

CS is obviously for the rich kids only.

Eric Redmond said...

Computer literacy will soon be considered basic education. Writing composition wasn't even required at Harvard until 1873. Math wasn't widely taught until the industrial revolution. We need to move past the idea that "reading, writing, arithmetic" are fixed as the only necessary skills to being a functional adult. No one bats an eyes about baby books with ABCs or 123s. Thanks for looking, however!

Eric Redmond said...

Alfred, your post inspired me to write a short article to clarify my position. https://medium.com/@coderoshi/computer-literacy-as-minimal-education-2b5f83f9d6f8

Thanks again for a great blog, and working for a worthy cause.

Alfred Thompson said...

Thanks for linking to your post Eric. I will be linking to it soon.