Coding is the New Literacy
“Coding is not just a set of technical skills, but a new type of literacy and personal expression, valuable for everyone, much like learning to write.” – Mitchel Resnick, MIT Media Lab
With computer science driving innovation in the United States, the importance of learning coding skills is becoming a fundamental focus of the elementary education curriculum.
And as part of its mission to engage and inspire children to succeed in school and in life, in December PBS KIDS launched ScratchJr, a mobile app developed in collaboration with the MIT Media Lab and Tufts University’s Developmental Technologies Research Group. The free app is designed to help children ages 5-8 learn core coding concepts as they create their own interactive stories and games using their favorite PBS KIDS characters from Wild Kratts, Nature Cat, WordGirl and Peg + Cat!
Through outreach efforts supported by Verizon and Ready To Learn, in 2016 PBS member stations will extend the reach of PBS KIDS ScratchJr to underserved communities, helping children learn coding skills through outreach programs and partnerships with Title I schools. In addition, via PBS stations, teachers will be provided professional development workshops on coding and integrating PBS KIDS ScratchJr into the classroom and afterschool activities.
Learn more and watch this space for station stories later in the year!