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What is Coding?

Code is the language used to instruct computers. Facebook, your mobile apps and your browser are all made with code – it’s simply computer programming to you and me! And there are a range of different programming languages you can use – HTML, for example, is the computer code used to create web pages.

BBC Learning - What Is Coding

Rumpus Animation created 5 films for BBC Learning to help explain computers to 5 - 7 year olds

Chances are your child will get to grips with coding far more quickly than you, but if you don’t want to get left behind, here’s where you can get help:

  • Codecademy – a great starting point to get familiar with code for free.
  • Scratch – learn to program your own interactive stories, games and animations and share them around the world.
  • Code Club – find out if there’s a club near you for your child to join (or perhaps you have the skills to run one locally!). If that's not an option, Code Club has made all its UK projects available online for free, an amazing resource for parents and teachers alike. Look through the Code Club term-by-term project list and get started now.
  • Kids Ruby – a fun and easy way to help your child learn Ruby programming.
  • The Tynker iPad app is free and offers coding puzzles and games to get you started.
  • BBC Bitesize has a Computing area for KS1 and KS2, packed with films and simple explanations
  • Kodu allows children as young as 5 to code their own games. Free download (PC only).
  • Code Playground (from Barclays) lets you change the code for different animated objects and see the effects immediately. You can also try the Barclays Digital Driving Licence for a free online course to computing.
Try Coding at home using Purple Mash:
  • Citrine 9,996
  • Emerald 10,533
  • Ruby 10,692
  • Sapphire 10,713