15 Best Coding Games for Kids

If you’re a parent, then chances are you’ve heard endless debates about how screen time affects children. And while it’s always a good idea to encourage your kids to put down their phones, tablets, and laptops in order to get some fresh air, there’s nothing wrong with giving your children some screen time — especially if they’re learning something with their devices. Looking for some educational online games that your kids will actually enjoy? Then you’ll want to check out the best coding websites and games for kids, which can nurture everything from problem-solving skills to critical thinking to creativity.

Learning to code has many benefits that can help kids out later in life, too. In addition to being a skill that’s highly valued in the workforce, coding teaches people how to work more efficiently and logically. As Steve Jobs once said, “Everyone in this country should learn how to program a computer, because it teaches you how to think.” Of course, it might help to know a little bit more about coding and its benefits before you get your children started (and no, teaching your kid to code doesn’t mean you expect them to become the next Steve Jobs). Here’s what you should know about coding programs for kids:

What is coding, in simple terms?

Simply put, coding is telling a computer or machine how to perform a task. As a rep from Raspberry Pi Foundation explains, “Coding is one aspect of digital making. When you write code, you are writing instructions for a computer to follow.” As complex as they may seem, computers are actually simple devices, so that’s why you have to give them really simple instructions that you then build into a complex set of rules. And learning how to provide those instructions isn’t just helpful for computers — it challenges programmers to communicate with computers in a way that makes sense.

Why is coding good for kids?

Teaching your kid how to code won’t just make them a computer whiz — it will teach them plenty of other valuable skills as well. “When young people

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Itching to code? These are the best games to learn programming skills

Many of us would like to learn to program, but are daunted. It turns out programming is not really difficult at all once you’ve got the trick of it (really!). 

But, there’s a lot of knowledge to gain before you, the student, can be anything but utterly confused. It can be painful. If only there existed some gentler way to smuggle programming knowledge into your head.

Thankfully, there are some great games out there that can teach you how to code, while also being fun. Read on to find out our pick. Also, make sure you check out our guide on the best laptops for programming on for some great choices to help you code.

CodinGame screenshot

(Image credit: CodinGame)

1. CodinGame

CodinGame has a very special place in our hearts because not only is it free and ridiculously fun, it actually helps you to build up a profile and get hired in a relevant field. In this it’s similar to well-known sites like Leetcode and HackerRank, except a lot more effort has been put into presenting the education as a game.

Create your developer profile, which fills out the more you code and play. When you’re ready, you can open it up to companies of your choice and perhaps get hired doing what you love.

So, try out CodinGame, you won’t regret it.

Gladiabots screenshot

(Image credit: WhisperGames)

2. Gladiabots – AI Combat arena

Ah, strategy and programming; what more could you ask for? Developed by GFX47 and published by WhisperGames, Gladiabots is an award-winning robot combat strategy game.

In it, you fight robots with robots. Instead of controlling them directly, however, you program their AI and let them fight by themselves. Debug, improve and fix your AI ’till it’s able to outsmart your enemies in three unique game modes, Elimination, Domination and Collection.

There’s a single-player campaign, online multiplayer with ranked/unranked modes and an asynchronous multiplayer mode for offline play with friends. There’s also a sandbox mode, where you can control both teams.

Grab a copy on Steam for $14.99 (around £13, AU$20) or get 20% off the Optimized Edition

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