“You should know that Myra is learning to code. They’ve already started teaching her Python,” a close friend exclaimed, beaming from ear to ear.
For her age, I know her kid is an amazing Kathak dancer… I also know that even if her life depended on it, she couldn’t turn on the computer by herself.
Surprisingly, the tiny girl despises electronics and struggles to build a simple house using a Paintbrush (you know, that figure with one triangle, one parallelogram, one rectangle, and one square).
She’s also seven years old.
Her mother, on the other hand, appears to believe she has the potential to be a great future coder. And that if she starts learning coding now, at the age of seven, she could be able to secure a well-paying job at Microsoft or another corporate behemoth.
A majority of Indian parents are duped into believing that their children will be left behind in this wild race called life if they don’t learn to code from an early age.
Furthermore, celebrities such as Madhuri Dixit and Hrithik Roshan are endorsing this viewpoint.
Why do parents who haven’t enrolled their children in an educational coding program get panic attacks? How well will my child be able to keep up with his classmates? Will my child be able to flourish in math and coding? Is my child’s brain going to develop properly? Do you think my child will have a job that pays well? Do you think my child can find a suitable life partner?
It’s impossible to put a stop to that line of thought!
Although I’ve never seen it happen in India, I’ve heard of parents who’ve enrolled their children as early as four years of age in coding classes. “Experts” believe that coding should be taught in primary schools to youngsters as young as five.
What a load of nonsense, I say! It’s completely fine if your youngster isn’t learning to code.
Please don’t get me wrong.
When it comes to teaching your youngster how to code, it’s a great idea.
But expecting every child on the earth to learn to code or take an active interest in it is ridiculous.
It’s ludicrous to expect all children to be able to paint, sing, dance, or play the piano.
Coding is not an important life skill, despite what coding programs would have you believe. If your youngster isn’t learning to code, that’s entirely normal.
If your child excels in logical reasoning and computers, you should strongly encourage him or her to explore coding. But don’t just do it because it’s what everyone else is doing!
Introduce your youngster to the notion and, if she or he finds it intriguing enough, let them try it out.
However, this, too, should occur at the appropriate age!
Everything has its time and place; you can’t expect a youngster to run before they can stand up.
Coding is no different.
You should not enroll a child who can barely write his name in a coding lesson just because everyone else is doing it or because you want something to brag about to your friends (guilty: I’ve done it)!
Children as young as six years old are still gaining cognitive, social, and physical abilities. They’re still learning how to make friends, react to various situations, express themselves, read independently, and tie their shoes.
Some people still have trouble keeping their beds dry at night!
It’s a little lot to expect these newborns to comprehend and then be fascinated by codes and computers, as well as all the other things that go on inside their tiny environment. Even cruel.
It’s important to remember that there are only 24 hours in a day. Your youngster is sleeping for 8-10 hours out of these. 6-7 hours are spent in school or on school-related activities (homework etc.).
Take a break for three hours for eating, showering, getting dressed, etc.
The next 4-5 hours are theirs to have fun.
So, let them savor their youthfulness. Allow them to mingle with their classmates and make new friends. By taking them to a park, you’ll allow them to spend time in the great outdoors rather than hunched over a computer screen. Let them grow.
For God’s sake, they’re just kids! Don’t overburden them with the pressures of a “career.”
That, believe me, can wait.
So, when is the best time to start learning to code?
I believe that there is no need to discourage your child from pursuing a job or developing an interest in computer programming until they are mature enough to realize that this is what they want to do. It could happen when you’re 10, 12, or older.
My son has always stated that he wants to be a doctor because he is fascinated by human anatomy.
We introduced him to coding when he was 13 years old. That was sole to offer him an idea of a different field to pursue. We wanted him to make an informed decision about which path to pursue when the time came (after 10th grade).
However, most of them are unaware that according to various studies, 60 percent of our technological abilities become obsolete every couple of years.
This means that whatever languages your children are studying right now are unlikely to be in use in a few years. So, what exactly is the point?
But if not, let them follow their own path. Guide them, but give them the freedom to choose.
And remember, no matter what your friends, family, neighbors, random coding classes tell you, it is not the end of the world if your child is not learning to code.
Finally – Yes, your neighbor’s child might be the future Bill Gates, but who knows, you may also have the next Gordon Ramsay right at home!