Maybe the title should say “especially if you can’t” code. Because that’s really the dilemma, isn’t it? You know that the more technology your child knows, the better off he or she will be. But how do you teach your child to code if you don’t know how to yourself? What exactly do they need to know and when and how should they learn it? This is an issue important for all parents, but especially for parents that homeschool their children.
Centriq Instructor Jason Presley has put together a guide of (mostly) free computer training resources for the Midwest Parent Educators Conference in Kansas City. The resource guide has been divided into five grade categories identifying appropriate resources for each group. It is primarily intended for homeschool use but is a valuable guide for all parents. Here is a summary of the recommended computer skills for each age group and a link below to the free resources.
Preschool – 2nd Grade
Early elementary students can begin their computer education by learning to navigate a modern computer environment. This primarily involves mastering basic mouse usage including moving the cursor, right and left mouse click and clicking and dragging. The mouse tutorial on gcflearnfree.org and Course 1 on code.org as well as simple elementary computer games are good starting points for beginning computer users.
3rd – 5th Grade
The ability to type has become a very necessary and basic computer skill. Even for people with non-technical jobs, the ability to type an email is an important task. Upper elementary students can use the various typing tutors and games to help build this very important skill. We highly recommend typing.com to learn the basics and then NitroType.com to build speed and accuracy. This is also the age when kids learn about the internet as well as exposure to basic coding. I strongly encourage older elementary school students to complete Courses 2-4 on Code.org to get a great introduction to computer programming.
6th – 8th Grade
Many jobs desire, if not require, employees to have a basic understanding of office applications such as Word, PowerPoint and Excel. Students can learn how to use the various office applications by utilizing the many Microsoft Office related resources available on gcflearnfree.org/office. The use of Word, PowerPoint and Excel can be integrated into other aspects of your student’s education. For example, your child can type a book report in Word or create a science or history presentation in PowerPoint. For users that don’t have Microsoft Office available, a free Microsoft Live account can be created and free online versions of Microsoft Office programs can be used by visiting www.office.com.
In addition to an understanding of the basic Office applications, middle school students with an interest in computer programming can begin working on programming fundamentals by utilizing graphical programming tutorials and programming resources.
9th – 12th Grade
Graduating seniors or other post graduates seriously interested in pursuing a career in the Information Technology (IT) field should strongly consider Centriq Training’s TechSmart KC program. As an alternative to the traditional 4-year college route, Centriq Training has created a proven 4 month program that equips individuals with the skills needed to gain entry level IT positions in either web programming or IT administration/networking. Over 850 Kansas City companies have hired TechSmart KC grads.
Click the link below to view and download the Resources Guide.
If you have questions about any of these free resources, please contact Jason Presley at email@example.com.
To learn more about Centriq’s 4-month TechSmart KC program visit us online at centriq.com/4months or call Kim Bridges at 913-322-7073.