When my kids were small, we didn’t do any computer-based lessons. I occasionally incorporated some educational videos and when I needed a break, I offered educational video games. For children under age 10, I truly felt that hands-on, project-based, and “analog” activities were best. However, as my kids grew older, I allowed more online learning. One of the things that drew their attention was online computer coding classes.
The first thing my oldest son did was hunt for those online school sites. These sites offer tons of courses for free or for a low monthly price. I don’t recommend this option. I found several problems with these sites, even though they are affordable.
First, with the exception of Outschool, these sites target adult learners. (And Outschool standards are higher than most other online education sites.) Second, there is no quality control. Pretty much anyone can be a course instructor and call their course “comprehensive,” “beginner,” or whatever other label they want. In addition, no quality control means that sometimes the instructors are difficult to understand. And, the video quality might be poor, too. Third, very often, the student has to piece together several courses from different instructors in order to learn the skill. Add in that most are recorded, making it difficult to ask questions, and you have a very frustrating experience. Other problems abound, but online computer coding classes for kids need not be like this!
The best way to teach online computer coding classes for kids
Now, if you’ve been reading my blog posts, you know that I’m big on teens learning relevant, marketable job skills. All of my children graduate high school with some sort of skills they can use right away. My oldest daughter learned digital art skills in graphic design and basic web design. My oldest son ended up learning audiovisual skills, 3-D modeling and animation, and digital art and game design. Now, my younger daughter is now in high school, so it’s her turn to learn marketable job skills. To avoid the frustration that her brother experienced, I asked around. I didn’t want to just do a search. I already knew what that would turn up. While my daughter did some experimenting on her own creating Wix websites, she wanted to learn more. That’s when I came upon MyTekLab.
Online computer coding classes designed specifically for kids
I have come across several coding sites for younger kids, say aged 8-12. However, when it comes to courses for older kids, there seems to be bit of a void, as I mentioned earlier. Many times, the ones I find are only offered through brick and mortar schools partnered with an online company. This is not the case with MyTekLab.
They specifically designed their classes for teens and they offer them independently of any school. They are a smaller company focused only on a limited number of students. That means more personalized attention to the needs of teen students.
A husband-wife team, Stephen and Jacky Souders, run MyTekLab. Stephen holds a M.S. in Computer Information Systems and has worked and taught in the web development field for more than twenty years. Jacky has taught children of all ages for the past ten years. This couple knows tech and knows how to reach kids. So, who better to teach young people about coding and web based applications than an expert?
Sorry, live online coding classes are always better. MyTekLab also records them so kids can watch them again or catch up if they miss. But, they offer them live first. Most places only offer “self-paced” with chat or email support. Hmmm. With kids, having to wait for an answer makes them frustrated and likely to just quit altogether. In a live class, they can ask questions now. The class does have to go on, though, so if it can’t be resolved quickly, MyTekLab has another option. They offer Help sessions later in the week as another opportunity for teens to ask their questions and get clarification on an assignment.
Relevant, self-paced assignments
Students complete assignments on MyTekLab’s special server. Classes are fast-paced and sometimes assignments need clarification. But, there are many opportunities for students to interact with the instructor. Assignments give students lots of real world practice in using the material. And that’s just what they need! Instructors give feedback and quizzes to help students succeed as well.
The technology sector is one of the fastest growing job markets, with millions of new jobs opening up each year. Will your student be ready to compete?
Go to MyTekLab and sign your teen up! Right now, if you register for semester 2, you can get $100 off the course material from semester 1! That’s all the recorded classes and assignments. All you have to do is email Jacky Souders ([email protected]) after you register and she’ll set you up.