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How does coding improve communication skills in kids?

I believe coding is fundamental to literacy in the future - Craig Federighi
With schools moving online, kids’ learning has become more unidirectional than ever before. So how can parents ensure that soft skills and communication don’t suffer? Coding can be an effective way to resolve that.
So how can programming on a computer help build communication skills? It’s simple. Coding is also a language. It not only helps one in communicating with a machine but also builds interpersonal skills like teamwork, peer-to-peer communication, taking constructive feedback.
If you’d like to understand more about it then read along

How does coding improve communication?

When a kid is presented with a coding problem, they get ample opportunities to make use of their communication skills. And in doing so, they are simultaneously getting better at both.
Let’s take an example. Building an app requires ideation, the problem it should solve, a viable solution, building a seamless user experience, and lastly changes based on user feedback. Each step involves communication.

Understanding the problem statement

Just like math, even coding problems need to be broken down into simpler actions for one to reach the solution. This action of breaking down a coding problem involves both logical and communication skills.
Learning a new language
As mentioned earlier, coding is essentially a language. It has its own set of rules and grammar. It also helps kids recognize patterns in logical statements. A study conducted by Janet Siegmund revealed that programming is more closely related to language than math.

Improves interpretation

When you review your code or a peer’s code, it helps you improve interpretation of the problem or error. You might discover a simpler way to problem solve. This is why code review contributes to improving your communication skills.
Coding only helps to communicate with a machine
This statement is far from the truth. Coding isn’t a single-member activity. It almost always involves communicating with a human besides the machine.

Communicating with teachers and peers

Programming has always been a collaborative process. The projects we take up in class will push us to communicate with our peers & resolve doubts with our teachers. Being on the same page as our peers while trying to problem solve improves communication.

Communicating with the users

This is an essential skill that is built while kids learn website or game development. The reason being - the website or game is built for the end-user hence understanding user experience is important. This interaction results in better communication.

Communicating through gaming

Online gaming communities help improve coding & communication skills. For example, Minecraft education edition. Here peers of all ages come to build virtual worlds in the game of Minecraft. Besides, learning to code with Minecraft, this strong community helps improving communication.

Final thoughts

Coding and communication go hand-in-hand. Both have a cause-and-effect sort of relationship. While learning to code, communication improves and vice-versa. Learning coding at a young age not only helps with cognitive development but also leads to a significant improvement in soft skills.

Posted in Learning on April 27 2021 at 02:32 PM

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