‘JavaScript For Kids’ is a Robust Primer for Future Kings of Code

“Learning to write programs stretches your mind, and helps you think better, creates a way of thinking about things that I think is helpful in all domains.” – Bill Gates

This quote by one of the most successful leaders in technology today stresses just how important computer programming is in today’s society. With more and more connected devices being introduced to the Internet of Things, learning how to code is becoming even more important with each passing day.  And, if Star Trek: TNG is in any way accurate, even doctors will eventually need to know how to program a computer, if that time isn’t already upon us.

That’s why it’s so very important to get children coding sooner rather than later, and Nick Morgan’s textbook JavaScript for Kids isn’t just a brilliant introduction to the most widely used programming language on the Internet, but is an easy to follow guide for learning the language, and is a great primer for programming in ANY language.

JavaScript for Kids Preview Page 1The first thing one notices about JavaScript for Kids is that it’s unmistakeably for children. The large print and cartoon images found throughout the book are an immediate giveaway. The second thing one notices about the book, however, is just how detailed and rich the contents actually are. While things begin with the standard basic introductions, by the end of the book it’s covering full-on animation programming, something I certainly did not expect from a textbook with the word “Kids” in the title. Although things get fairly technical by the end of the book, each chapter is incremented well, with each chapter providing valuable information and hands-on exercises without being so overwhelming as to turn young readers off, which is far too often the case. The author has found a terrific balance between the educational aspects of actually learning how to code with the fun of programming itself, but Morgan keeps this balance throughout the text while continually reinforcing the physical act of typing code on JavaScript for Kids Preview Page 2the screen. More often than not, programming textbooks make the mistake of stressing the particulars of a language, ignoring the fact that computer programing is very much a physical activity, in addition to an exercise in thinking. JavaScript For Kids has readers entering remedial code as early as page 7, and writing actual computer code by page 20! While the book certainly doesn’t ignore the definitions and minutia of JavaScript and program language overall, the actual act of coding is definitely in the front seat, behind the wheel, and driving the overall pace. This adds to the fun and doesn’t bog kids down with boring stuff so they can get their fingers dancing across the keys and making something fun.

The Verdict

JavaScript For Kids is a great introduction to computer programming that puts a focus on the physical act of programming and not the theory and jargon that tend to fill some texts. Children who have shown even the slightest interest in computer programming will run through this easy to follow, step by step introduction, and EVERY child should be made to sit down and work through the activities. Programming now and in the future is such an important skill, and this guide is a fantastic primer that is both immensely educational and wildly fun. Get your copy at the publishers website or on Amazon.

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