Building A Bright Future: 12 Best Coding Books For Kids

Get Coding and Coding books beside cup of coffee

Today, software touches every aspect of our lives, making coding not just an invaluable skill but a new kind of literacy. For your curious little ones, coding for kids isn’t merely about understanding computers. Rather, it’s a doorway to enhancing academic performance in areas like mathematics, writing, and creativity. The magic of coding lies in its power to transform abstract mathematical concepts into visual, interactive experiences while fostering logical problem-solving that boosts confidence. With every line of code, children learn to tell stories concisely and with structure, sparking a boundless realm of creativity as they craft their digital worlds.

As you explore the potential of programming, choosing the right resources is crucial, and coding books for kids can be the perfect starting guide. A well-selected coding book not only introduces the fundamentals of coding languages but also nurtures focus, organizational skills, and resilience. It equips young minds to build apps, robots, and computing programs that could shape our future. Moreover, with automation on the rise, understanding the basics of code from an early age prepares kids to thrive in a future brimming with robots and automated systems.

Key Takeaways

  • Coding is a new literacy.
  • Learning to code benefits kids in many ways and prepares them for a future heavily influenced by technology.
  • Starting with coding books helps children learn coding languages in a fun and engaging way.

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Best Coding Books for Young Beginners

1. “How to Explain Coding to a Grown-Up” by Ruth Spiro

This is a picture book that simplifies coding concepts for kids and adults alike. It focuses on the basics of computer programming, from hardware to algorithms, in a way that is easy to understand. The colourful illustrations and relatable examples make it an excellent choice for young beginners.

2. “My First Coding Book” by Kiki Prottsman

This interactive board book introduces basic programming concepts to young children. It features puzzles and games that engage children in a hands-on learning experience. This book encourages critical thinking and problem-solving skills while making coding fun and accessible.

3. “First Coding Book For Kids” by Kidlo

This is designed for 4 to 7-year-olds, making it ideal for early learners. It engages children with activities and problem-solving tasks that introduce them to the world of coding. This book focuses on building a foundation in computational thinking and logical reasoning.

Coding Books for Intermediate Learners

4. “ScratchJr Coding Cards” by Marina Umaschi Bers and Amanda Sullivan

This set of 75 cards helps kids learn coding in ScratchJr through creative projects. It is suitable for young children and emphasizes creativity and problem-solving.

The cards are designed to foster creative and systematic thinking in children, helping them develop their computational thinking skills. They enable children to make characters move, jump, dance, sing, and engage in various activities, providing an immersive and interactive learning experience.

As your kids progress through the deck, they will cultivate their creativity and problem-solving abilities, becoming more adept at tackling challenges. These cards offer an engaging and hands-on approach to learning, empowering children to think critically and explore the world of coding.

5. “Coding for Kids: Scratch” by Matthew Highland

This book is aimed at 6 to 10-year-olds and is perfect for beginners looking to create their own games. It teaches code blocks, sprites, and scorekeeping through game development. It encourages hands-on learning and provides guidance on creating interactive projects.

6. “Coding Projects in Scratch” by Jon Woodcock

This step-by-step visual guide is designed for 9 to 12-year-olds who are ready to advance from basic to more complex projects. This book encourages creativity by teaching kids how to create electronic birthday cards, animations, and games in Scratch. It provides step-by-step instructions and challenges to enhance coding skills.

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Advanced Coding Books for Kids

7. “Python for Kids: A Playful Introduction to Programming” by Jason R. Briggs

This book introduces Python programming in an engaging and visually appealing manner. It is suitable for kids interested in moving beyond block-based coding languages. It covers fundamental programming concepts and encourages hands-on practice through fun projects.

Accompanied by the patient guidance of Jason R. Briggs, this book takes your child through the fundamentals while allowing them to explore unique and amusing example programs. These programs feature a range of captivating elements, including voracious monsters, covert agents, mischievous ravens, and more. Throughout the book, new terms are defined, code is colour-coded, deconstructed, and explained, and vibrant full-colour illustrations add an element of whimsy.

Each chapter concludes with programming puzzles that aim to challenge your child’s thinking and enhance their comprehension.

8. “Coding for Kids in Python” by Adrienne B. Tacke

This book offers an engaging and interactive way for children to learn the fundamentals of the Python programming language. With 50 exciting activities, kids will embark on a journey that takes them from grasping the basic building blocks of coding to creating their own games. Each lesson includes practical examples and a touch of playfulness.

Throughout the book, kids will actively participate in coding, step by step, and witness the immediate results of their efforts. At the end of each chapter, there are activities designed to test their newly acquired knowledge by combining multiple concepts.

9. “Coding Games in Python” by DK

This book targets 9 to 12-year-olds and teaches game development with Python. It includes quizzes and puzzles to enhance coding knowledge and problem-solving skills. Each chapter takes your kids through the process of creating a fully functional game using a series of straightforward steps. Utilizing readily available resources, like a downloadable collection of images and sounds, they can incorporate animations, music, scrolling backgrounds, scenery, and other captivating professional elements.

Once the game is complete, discover how to customize it further by implementing secret hacks and cheat codes!

Through this book, your kids will grasp the fundamental concepts that programmers require to write code, not just in Python but across all programming languages. They will learn how to strategize and design the ultimate game and then put it through rigorous testing and debugging until it reaches its full potential.

Specialized Coding Books

10. “Coding Concepts for Kids” by Randy Lynn

This book teaches coding fundamentals without the need for a computer. It includes on-page puzzles and activities to develop analytical thinking skills. It is an offline skill-building resource that covers topics such as algorithms, sequences, loops, and conditionals, providing a solid foundation in coding principles.

11. “DKfindout! Coding” by DK

This book explores how coding shapes our world and is suitable for fact-loving kids. It introduces kids ages 6-9 to the people and inventions behind everyday coding applications. It covers various coding languages, careers in coding, and real-life examples of coding in action.

12. “The Coding Workbook” by Sam Taylor

This workbook offers a unique approach to learning HTML and CSS through a pencil-and-paper workbook. It allows kids to build a website from the ground up without screens. It provides step-by-step instructions, coding exercises, and creative challenges to enhance coding skills. By writing code directly in the workbook and visualizing it in a web browser, children will gain hands-on experience in creating web pages.

Packed with exercises, illustrations, and progress quizzes, this workbook is ideal for self-guided learning at home or in schools where computer or internet access may be limited.

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How to Choose the Right Coding Book for Your Child

white smartphone on two softbound books

With so many coding books for kids on the market, it’s essential to choose the right one for your child’s age and skill level. Here are some key factors to consider:

Age appropriateness

Coding books are often categorized by age range to ensure that the content is suitable for your child’s developmental stage. Look for books that align with your child’s age to make sure they can understand and engage with the material effectively.

Programming language

Different programming languages serve different purposes and have varying levels of complexity. Consider the programming language taught in the book and choose one that aligns with your child’s interests and goals. Common programming languages for kids include Scratch, Python, Java, HTML/CSS, and JavaScript.

Content and approach

Each coding book has its own teaching style and approach. Some books focus on project-based learning, where kids complete coding exercises to create games, animations, and more. Others provide a more comprehensive introduction to coding concepts and theory. Consider your child’s learning style and choose a book that matches their preferences.

Visual appeal

Books with engaging visuals, illustrations, and colourful layouts can capture a child’s attention and make the learning process more enjoyable. Look for coding books with vibrant visuals that will keep your child engaged and excited about coding.

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Integrating Coding Books with Coding Courses and Camps

While coding books provide an excellent foundation for learning, combining them with coding classes and camps can enhance your child’s coding journey. Software Academy offers a wide range of coding courses and camps for kids of all ages and skill levels.

By combining coding books with interactive online courses or immersive coding camps, your child can receive hands-on guidance from experienced instructors and engage in collaborative coding projects. This integrated approach allows kids to apply the knowledge gained from coding books in a practical setting, reinforcing their understanding of coding concepts.

Whether your child is new to coding or looking to expand their skills, Software Academy provides a supportive and educational environment for young coders. Explore our coding programs and find the perfect complement to the coding books you’ve chosen.

FAQs

What are the benefits of coding for my kids?

Coding can improve children’s problem-solving skills, logical thinking, creativity, and communication. It can also boost their confidence and prepare them for a future heavily influenced by technology.

At what age can my kids start learning to code?

Kids ages 4 or 5 can begin exploring basic coding concepts through unplugged activities and games. However, the most suitable book will depend on the child’s age, interests, and learning style.

What’s a good starting point for children interested in coding?

Children with no previous coding experience can start with Scratch, which uses colourful command blocks to teach programming concepts. As they advance, kids can move on to learning web technologies like HTML and CSS and programming languages such as JavaScript and Python.

Conclusion

Coding books for kids offer a valuable learning experience that ignites a lifelong passion for technology and programming. By choosing the right coding book for your child’s age and skill level, you can provide them with the tools they need to thrive in the digital age.

We hope this guide has helped you discover some of the best coding books available for kids. And don’t forget to explore the coding courses and camps offered by Software Academy to take your child’s coding journey to the next level.

Start your child’s coding adventure today and watch as they unlock their creativity and problem-solving skills through the exciting world of coding!

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About the author

Ana Moniz

Ana lectures for computer games design at higher education. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Computer Games Design and a  Master’s degree in Digital Media Design from the University of Edinburgh

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