My 11 YO wants to learn to program

Discussion in 'Programming & Software Development' started by g@z, Apr 3, 2016.

  1. g@z

    g@z Member

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    Gidday,

    My 11 year old son has said he wants to learn programing, with an interest in games.

    I suck at programming and avoid it like the plague so I have no idea where to start.

    Any suggestions that won't scare him off? Thanks!

    Regards,
    g@z.
     
  2. aussie7

    aussie7 Member

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    I have no idea what is the best language to start with and like you I avoid it.

    Maybe find out what language they teach in the later years at school and get him started on that :confused:
     
  3. power

    power Member

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  4. elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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  5. OP
    OP
    g@z

    g@z Member

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    Awesome! Thanks folks, I'll get him started on that and see how it works out :)

    Regards,
    g@z.
     
  6. anark1

    anark1 Member

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  7. elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    These are very cool, although worth noting that they also use Scratch (linked above) as their programming tool of choice.

    Scratch is available on anything (Windows, Mac, Linux, Raspberry Pi and other microboards) for free, and is very lightweight. No need to spend any money on extra hardware if you don't want to.
     
  8. yoink

    yoink Member

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    I've heard good things about this:

    https://code.org/mc

    It teaches programming concepts without coding, plus it's MineCraft, so probably an easy sell.
     
  9. maldotcom2

    maldotcom2 Member

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    Going from scratch to writing games will be a grind for most people let alone an 11 year old, lots of work and little reward. Not to quell the enthusiasm, but consider an alternative approach so his interest doesn't fade. You could perhaps do a mechatronics/robotics project using a project board, that way you still learn coding with a whole host of variables, but you have a physical object you can manipulate. I made a robotic car with an onboard Picaxe, that was before Raspberry Pi was a thing.
     
  10. negatron

    negatron Member

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  11. becubed

    becubed Member

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  12. doug81

    doug81 Member

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    free course that I can highly recommend!

    https://www.udemy.com/game-development-crash-course/

    really basic stuff in Corona, but he'll build a working game in no time and learn a bit of a basic language (Lua) - best way to start IMHO as the reward isn't months away - the instructor is pretty good too
     
  13. BurningFeetMan

    BurningFeetMan Member

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    Check out Khan Academy, as it's free and by no means limited to just programming. If I had Khan academy during my HSC, I dare say I could have pushed through & understood both high level maths and physics.
     
  14. Jazper

    Jazper Member

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  15. flain

    flain Member

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    Some good suggestions already especially code.org

    My 9 year old also likes Khan Academy hour of code:
    https://www.khanacademy.org/hourofcode

    Some of these actually do get down to writing some code, learning how to create functions and some other basic stuff but usually have visual feedback to go along
     
  16. Sindarin Ultra

    Sindarin Ultra Member

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    Are you cereal right now? If you were going to go this route then you may as well go with K&R 2nd ed.

    C or C++ is likely to make most adults give up let alone an 11yo. Stick to scratch etc or maybe Khan's javascript.
     
  17. Smokin Whale

    Smokin Whale Member

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    Cmon, that book is only 1368 pages. Nothing an 11 year old couldn't do in a weekend, right? :tongue:
     
  18. macrocephalic

    macrocephalic Member

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    Just my personal opinion: I've run through a few game programming tutorials for fun (things like Construct2 etc) and most of them get quite bogged down in operating the editor rather than actually learning anything about coding.

    I would strongly agree with maldotcom2's suggestion of programming hardware. We played around with the Lego Mindstorm stuff in an introductory robotics class at uni and it was very accessible, but also C programmable (assuming it's still the same). It's not cheap, though.
     
  19. NanoDuke

    NanoDuke Member

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  20. elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    As someone who went from nothing to C++ in one jump as a youngster and failed miserably (to the point of almost dropping computer science all together), this is a terrible idea.

    Scratch is custom designed to teach 8-16 year olds code. After that, Python is a great teaching language for young adults, and instantly accessible and practical to a wide deal of industries, applications and hobbies.

    C, C++ and Java are not languages I'd teach to anyone straight up. That can come in time to those who are interested in a deeper career in development (which is entirely different to programming, and for a bunch of important reasons).
     

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