Why you should get your students switched on to coding

This article was published on the Barclays Life Skill website in March 2016.

You might have seen the news that the BBC micro:bit is now being sent out to all year 7 students. The aim of these mini, programmable computers is to inspire students to develop creative and digital skills through coding, and get more young people interested in science, technology, engineering and maths. It is clear from this alone that coding has become the hot topic for technology in the classroom, having been made a part of the curriculum as of September 2014 [1]. With over 12 million people in the UK unprepared to fill the looming digital skills gap, it’s no surprise that coding has been highlighted as such an important aspect of current and future teaching models [2]

Though coding may seem very technical and sometimes daunting to tackle, confined to the realms of the computer labs, I’d like to dispel this myth. Granted, the digital skills learnt from coding are a major benefit to the changing needs of the labour market; in today’s digital world, it’s not enough for the next generation to know how to use programmes and software – they also need an appreciation for how these things are developed and how coding is used to produce them. But we shouldn’t consider it a teaching practice exclusively designed for computing lessons.

Read the rest of this article on the Barclays Life Skills website.