What your kids can do now to set themselves up for a successful career in computers. Let’s review how to pursue a career in coding & video game development.
My brother suggested once to me that I sign my girls up for coding classes at a local storefront coding center aimed at kids that opened in my area not long ago. After looking at their website, I had to pick my jaw up off the floor. “It is so expensive to send my girls there,” I lamented. “Who can afford these classes?” My brother, childless, then posed an excellent question to me. “How much do you pay monthly for your girls’ activities already?” It took me a minute to add up the hundreds of dollars I pay monthly for swim team, tumbling lessons, ice skating classes and so on. “And do you really think your girls are going to become professional swimmers or ice skaters?” And honestly, I don’t. Not because they are talented in their activities, but simply because those really aren’t careers you pursue, those are hobbies you may have as an adult. “So why not invest in something that your kids might actually benefit from as an adult?”
He really got me thinking. Because he definitely didn’t miss the mark here.
Although I don’t plan to un-enroll my girls from any of their chosen activities any time soon (physical activity is good for kids!), I did look deeper into coding classes and coding programs my girls can engage with now, as young girls. Whether or not they one day decide to pursue a career in coding or video game development, it is hard to argue with the logic that the computer skills gained from learning to code will be immeasurably valuable later on in life no matter which type of career they plan to pursue.
Kids and computers: how to help your child pursue a career in coding & video game development
If your child simply loves to play on the tablet or the computer, use it to your advantage. When your child games, they do so much more than simply interact with seemingly mindless images. Gaming can teach your children about math and problem-solving skills as well as language and fine motor skills. With so many professional jobs now being done online, your kids learn a lot when they play around on their computers and tablets. To encourage them to learn as they play, consider a few of these activities that might help your child seriously consider pursuing a degree in computer engineering, software development and/or video game development.
- Encourage your child to interact with educational games that are fun! We compiled a great list of 10 games your kids will enjoy playing (Shh! No one tell them how much they are learning in the process!).
- Consider enrolling your child in coding classes. Coder Kids offers great, engaging curriculum that will help your kids create a great foundation for coding. There are also lots of options popping up all the time both online and in-person all around the country.
- Set up a time to chat with someone who currently works in computer development. If you don’t personally know anyone, ask your friends and family. Connecting your child with someone currently in the industry might help steer them toward a specific area of interest and help them identify areas in which they need to grow and hone their skills. If you live near a university, you might also contact the school to see if your child can interview a student or be connected with someone who could act as a mentor and talk to your child about computer programming and video game development.
- Look online for colleges and technical schools that provide a degree or certification program in computer engineering or a similar field. It’s never too early for your child to start thinking about life after high school, and preparing early could give them a leg up.
- Enrol your child in a club or activity program that explores gaming and coding. Many libraries are now offering courses for free or cheap that help kids explore computers. Finding a group of like-minded friends can help your child explore the field of computers and identify what specific avenue they want to pursue.
Learning how to code at an early age with give your child a leg up. Have you tried coding classes?