Children who learn computer science skills such as coding gain a multitude of benefits in other areas, including problem solving, creative thinking and mathematics, according to a new study by OKdo.
For a new report titled Broader Benefits of Learning to Code, the global tech company gathered survey responses from almost 7,000 UK teachers and parents (with children aged 5-16), in which 96% of teachers claimed to have seen first-hand evidence of how computer science lessons can help to improve both hard and soft skills, as well as IT abilities, in children.
Overall, eight in 10 (82%) of teachers said computer science education boosts pupils’ problem solving capabilities. On top of this, two thirds (68%) agreed that it helps them develop expertise in mathematics, while six in 10 (60%) claimed that lessons in the subject also positively impacts creative thinking in young people.
Over a third (35%) felt that teaching coding can boost children’s organisational and time management skills, with 34% also feeling that participating in the subject can improve young people’s ability to work as part of team.
One in five (19%) expressed that investing in computer science skills can help to advance children’s academic performance overall.
Similar thoughts were echoed by parents; more parents of children who have learnt coding (or been taught computer science at school) ranked their kids’ ability in maths, writing, creative thinking, communication, and teamwork as ‘above average for their age’ when compared with students who hadn’t taken part in computer science lessons.
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On the findings, Georgina Durrant, author of 100 Ways Your Child Can Learn Through Play’, and founder and creator of The Special Education Needs (SEN) Resources blog, commented: “Computer science is fantastic for helping children to develop some really important skills such as problem solving, lateral thinking and creativity.
“Computer science education can be absolutely brilliant for supporting children to learn how to successfully work as a team, how to manage any potential conflicts and disagreements, and how to work to deadlines as part of a group. All these skills are transferrable and vital for future studies and careers. It’s important to remember that we are preparing children, especially with computer science, for careers in the future that may not even exist yet.”