So your child is ready to learn coding but you're not sure where to begin? No problem! Discover some of the best online coding platforms for kids to learn how to code. These platforms are designed by highly regarded non-profits such as Code.org, as well as Silicon Valley veterans from Google and Apple, ensuring your student learns highly applicable skills and real world tools. As Apple CEO Tim Cook said, "Coding is the most important second language for everyone to learn."
Discover the Best Coding Platforms for Kids
The best coding platforms for kids open their eyes to a whole new world! These coding platforms offer all sorts of learning, from personalized guided live interaction with experts, through to self-guided challenges. So no matter your child's learning style or busy schedule, you're sure to find the perfect fit.
Create & Learn is an award-winning coding class platform providing top-quality Computer Science education to students in grades K-12. There are more than 35 fun courses to choose from that cover a wide range of topics such as coding, robotics, Artificial Intelligence, game development, smart devices, and more.
All of the classes and camps are held live online in small groups (typically a max of five students) and are taught by experienced teachers. The classes can even be taken together as a learning path, empowering students to build their skills progressively. The curriculum was developed jointly by tech experts and experienced educators from Google, MIT, Stanford, Airbnb, and Uber, with a strong focus on developing students’ creativity and critical thinking skills using project and inquiry based learning. Today the classes have been recognized by Minecraft Education, Meta, SMASH, HulaFrog, ActivityHero, and more for their excellence.
Create & Learn also runs regular free large group events with speakers from NASA, Google, Pixar, and other top companies that every child is welcome to join! Begin with a free coding class to give it a try, or jump right into our most popular beginner class Scratch Ninja for Grades 2-5, Scratch Junior for Grades K-2, Accelerated Scratch for Grades 5-8, and Python for Grades 9+.
Minecraft Education Edition is an immersive and engaging platform designed specifically for educational purposes. It allows students to explore and learn through interactive gameplay, building, and coding. Minecraft Education Edition is a great fit for parents who want to help their children learn in a fun and interactive way.
In Minecraft Education Edition, students can collaborate and create in a virtual world, developing problem-solving and critical thinking skills. They can explore historical sites, recreate science experiments, or build their own structures, all while learning important concepts in subjects like math, science, and history. The platform provides a unique and engaging way for students to interact with and learn about various topics.
Minecraft Education Edition also offers a range of resources for educators, including lesson plans and tutorials, to help integrate the platform into the classroom. Parents can be confident that their children are learning important skills while having fun with Minecraft Education Edition. Whether your child is a beginner or a more experienced Minecraft player, they will find plenty of challenges and opportunities to learn with this innovative educational tool. To get started sign up as a parent for free or enroll your student in a free Create & Learn Minecraft Education Edition class: Minecraft Modding Quest, where they'll get live expert help solving puzzles, building, and creating fun games in Minecraft with coding.
Roblox Studio is a dynamic and interactive platform that offers kids and teens a unique opportunity to design and build their own games and virtual worlds. With its intuitive interface and easy-to-learn coding language, Roblox Studio is the perfect tool for children who want to develop their creativity and technical skills. Roblox Studio also has a number of safety controls in place to try to ensure a supportive environment for young developers.
Through Roblox Studio, kids can explore a vast library of assets and tools to create their own games, characters, and environments. They can customize everything from the terrain and lighting to the characters' movements and abilities, all with a simple drag-and-drop interface. And with its integrated coding language, Lua, children can add their own logic and behaviors to their creations, developing important skills in programming and problem-solving.
Roblox Studio also offers a variety of resources and tutorials for both beginners and experienced developers. From step-by-step guides to video tutorials, kids can learn how to use the platform's many features to bring their visions to life. Kids can also enjoy coding classes led live online by experts to learn Roblox coding and how to make their own obbies and more. Join Beginner Roblox Coding to build fun games with block coding, before advancing to text-based Lua in the Coding with Roblox Studio class. There's even an Advanced Roblox Coding class for making complex games.
Scratch is a platform designed by MIT that is a great way for children to learn coding. It's a free programming language and online community where you can create your own interactive stories, games, and animations. And kids as young as kindergarten can take part in using Scratch, through their tool designed for kids ages 5-7, Scratch Jr.
Scratch coding uses intuitive blocks that can be snapped together to tell a story or create an animation. At the same time, Scratch incorporates key coding concepts like loops, conditional statements, and variables. So Scratch serves as a great introduction to focus on computer science principles without worrying about syntax (typing errors!).
To make an account, click “Join Scratch” in the upper right corner. Then follow the instructions to make a username and password. Check how to use Scratch to begin experimenting.
Then, up first, have your student try some simple and fun Scratch exercises that involve flying, changing colors, noises, and more! Then complete some Scratch challenges including a translator and a story-based game. For ideas on what to make after that check out: Scratch projects for kids ideas and ScratchJr projects for kids.
5. Khan Academy
Khan Academy can be a nice fit for older and more advanced students who'd like to supplement live classes with some learning on their own. With Khan Academy students practice at their own pace, first filling in gaps in their understanding and then accelerating their learning.
Khan Academy’s library of trusted, standards-aligned practice and lessons were create by experts. Their content covers math K-12 through early college, grammar, science, history, AP, SAT, and more. Khan offers computer programming lessons in HTML, SQL, and JS.
Code.org is a nonprofit with a catalog of courses they've designed, and some from 3rd party partners as well, to help guide students in grades K-12 on their coding path. Kids in Grades K-5 can learn to make their own game, app, or computer drawing, all with self-guided lessons. This coding platform is a nice fit for students that can keep themselves motivated, or for parents that want to be highly involved!
Designed for older students in elementary school classrooms, their Course C is a popular place to begin coding for kids. It teaches students to create programs with sequencing, loops, and events. Translate their initials into binary, investigate different problem-solving techniques, and learn how to respond to cyberbullying. At the end of the course, kids can create their very own game or story they can share. The course guides kids step by step through each project right within their browser.
Learn more about how to use Code.org and get involved during its infamous "Hour of Code" - a global movement aimed at encouraging people of all ages to engage with computer programming through a one-hour coding experience that's accessible to beginners.
W3Schools is a free educational website for learning coding online that's great for more advanced coders. For students in middle school and high school, W3Schools is a great resource for coding tutorials in multiple languages. Students can get detailed information on coding topics in an easy-to-digest format.
What makes W3Schools particularly appealing for young coders is its "Try it Yourself" feature, where learners can write and test code directly within the web browser, providing hands-on experience at no cost. The site does a great job breaking concepts down into small pieces. Kids can get started by creating their first web page with HTML, and then style their web page using CSS.
W3Schools may be better to use as a supplemental resource, as it does not provide expert support to answer questions or direct students to clear next steps.
The Best Way for Kids and Teens to Learn Coding
Downloading an app, sorting through YouTube videos, and reading some books are all great ways for students to learn coding. However you've probably encouraged your child to do this before, and maybe they're consistent for a few days, and then eventually drop it.
There are undoubtedly so many online resources and platforms where your child can get information and knowledge about how to code for free. But what happens if they get stuck on a line of code, learn outdated information, or find all it too overwhelming or confusing? They probably won't stick with coding, and they might never want to return to it. The opportunity to foster their passion for computer science might flash by in the blink of an eye!
As the chart below reveals, there are many options for learning kids coding. Live classes offer some of the most compelling benefits when comparing some key factors such as supportive help, interactivity, and thoughtful accurate learning paths that set students up for success.
Live online classes are a great solution for helping your student explore computer science and discover how it aligns with their interests. They are likely the best shot your student has at gaining real coding skills soon, because passionate teachers will hold students accountable and support them. In addition, live online courses adapt the material to kids' learning styles, they help students when they run into tough problems with their code, and they taking the 'thinking' off your plate with a carefully designed curriculum - so you don't have to plan your student's next step or worry that the content will be out of their reach and overly frustrating.
Learning quickly and accurately in live online classes and camps will best equip your student to gain valuable computer science skills. They are an investment, but they don't have to be forever. For example, here at Create & Learn, you can pick and chose the classes your child enrolls in based on their schedule and interests: which can easily match your child's preferred time engagement and growing passions. Explore the curriculum here: Grades K-2 | Grades 2-4 | Grades 4-6 | Grades 6-9.
Of course, there's not just one solution for learning something new. Pairing live online classes with additional materials, such as the free online websites and apps we've mentioned here that encourage self-discovery, is a great way to round out your student's coding education.
Enjoy the Best Coding Platforms for Kids
STEM stats show that STEM jobs are expected to grow 10.5% between 2020 and 2030 compared to 7.5% growth for non-STEM jobs. This equates to 1 million more job openings over 10 years! It's not too early to get started.
Only 26% of elementary schools and 38% of middle schools offer computer science classes. So check out these online coding platforms for kids to begin your child's coding adventure.
We recommend kindergarten students begin with Scratch Junior, elementary students start with Scratch Ninja, middle school students begin with Accelerated Scratch, and high schoolers start with Python.
Up next, explore free coding games for kids.