Programming language for children

CLIFFORD ILKAY clifford_ilkay at
Sun Jun 14 19:34:42 UTC 2009

On 14/06/09 02:51 PM, marc wrote:
> Kjetil Halvorsen said:
>> I want to try to learn my daughters some programming language. (they are
>> 13,14 years)
>> In earlier times I would have thought about logo. What programming
>> language, available in ubuntu,
>> would you propose for this in our time?
> Pretty much all languages are available to you; just an install away. 
> Remarkable, really.
> Definitely avoid the c/c++ route. You want to make it fun, I suspect. You 
> need to be a qualified geek for c to be fun, and a sadomasochist to enjoy 
> c++.
> Folk here have suggested python, and I think that's a great choice.
> One thing I don't agree with here is the avoidance of an IDE. Modern IDEs 
> are superb tools that do a huge amount of donkey work for you and 
> organise your work. And they're fun!

They are nothing but a distraction for beginners and serve only to
confuse. They have to walk before they can run so let them learn the
fundamentals of programming first, learn the language constructs for
their particular language, and after they have some comfort level with
that, you can introduce an IDE. Of course we may be talking about two
completely different things when we say "IDE" because IDLE claims to be
an IDE but so does Eclipse. Putting Eclipse in front of a beginner is a
lost cause. It's overwhelmingly complex and can be very discouraging to
someone who is just starting.

Clifford Ilkay
1419-3266 Yonge St.
Toronto, ON
Canada  M4N 3P6

+1 416-410-3326
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