Parents' Choice Foundation: Reviewing Children's Media Since 1978



Kids, Code, and Computer Science Magazine

Kids, Code, and Computer Science Magazine

Spring 2016 Magazines
Ages: 5 - 16 yrs.
Newsstand Price: $6.00
Subscription Price: $29.99 / 6 Issues
Review:

In the days before the Internet, the first generation of young users of home computers learned to program any way they could. One of the more entertaining routes was through computer magazines, which not only published information on equipment but also had pages and pages devoted to whole programs (mostly games) written in the BASIC programming language and ready to be typed by hand into one's machine. Through example (and through hunting down typographical errors that caused program crashes), kids gradually picked up a working knowledge of program syntax and structure until they were ready to strike out on their own.

Learning to code in the modern age of computers is a very different, and often overwhelming, situation, but the young computer users are no less determined. Kids, Code, and Computer Science Magazine brings back the easily digested magazine format, offering resources for both beginning and experienced programmers. There are articles that do include code - for example, one recent issue had a tutorial on writing a simple Java function to draw text-based kittens - but there are also articles on computer history, programming clubs and events, easily learned (but powerful) computer hardware and software platforms, guides to lesser-known but useful or accessible programming languages, information on kid-friendly programming apps, and profiles of computer professionals. Some articles offer programming puzzles and challenges as well. The magazine features as many women and girls as men and boys (an extremely important feature for a publication in a field that loses talented young women at an alarming rate as they enter college and the profession) and people from a wide variety of socioeconomic backgrounds. Website resources further extend the magazine content. The cost per issue is steep (more appropriate for a classroom or library; it would be gratifying to see the cost come down as the magazine develops a wider following) but the price for an online subscription is considerably more reasonable for a family. Kids, Code, and Computer Science Magazine is a rich resource for fostering coding skills and computer enthusiasm in budding computer scientists.

Emily Crawford   ©2016 Parents' Choice
Emily holds a BSE in electrical engineering and computer science from Duke University and a Master's in computer engineering from Georgia Tech. She is a homeschooling parent and lives with her husband, three children, five cats, and thousands of LEGOs in Blacksburg, Virginia.

Look for this product at:
Kids, Code, and Computer Science Magazine
https://KidsCodeCS.com

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