Computational Thinking Frustrations

Should we teach computational thinking and coding skills?

I consider myself very lucky because I feel that I am taking part in a very important and very exciting time. In a time where future generations will interact with their environment in ways that we have never seen before and where main name brands are driving by the digital interaction, people have with their products or services. It does not matter whether we rent a car, go shopping or follow an artificial influencer on Instagram like Lil Miquela , Miquela@liliquela, artificial intelligence [AI] and digital technology is an integrated part of our everyday personal and professional lives. Even when we are not in front or because we are not in front of a screen, technology has influenced our way we appreciate real-time experiences and thus we may enjoy one-on-one communication so much more.
These digital advancements were made possible by the constant development of AIs and because of the tech-based economy that we live in, future employers will look for employees with coding and thus computational problem-solving skills. A prediction made by two Economists Carl Benedikt Frey and Michael Osbourne predicts that in the US, 47% of existing jobs are under threat from automation.
Computational thinking is a problem-solving process that uses decomposition, pattern recognition, pattern generalization and abstraction, and algorithm design. It is the ability to break down a problem and express the solution in a form that a computer can understand and evaluate. I strongly believe that computational thinking skills are important problem-solving skills for all aspects of our lives and thus support the implementation and teaching in all classrooms starting from kindergarten to K12 and beyond.
Since most digital devices and applications run on software, it is apparent that the demand for software engineers and programmers will increase. I believe that there are many reasons why computational thinking is important, however, I was even more thrilled and must agree with Gottfried Sehringer’s point of view, claiming that we do not have to teach everyone how to code.
Instead, we should not only offer coding interfaces that perhaps use a visual programming language that make building apps intuitive and very user-friendly but also teach students from early on, how to conduct and understand needs analysis, as well as how to visually express logic, and to understand how technology works will give them the tools they will need to envision game-changing innovations. The sky is the limit!

One Reply to “Should we teach computational thinking and coding skills?”

  1. Hi Martina, thank you for a great post! I also agree with you and Gottfriend that not everyone needs to code, but that in general, so called computational thinking skills are important to learn moving forward.

    I think one of the most important functions of schools is giving students opportunities. So, the opportunity to code, or to learn how to code should be something we offer in grade schools, as by the time students reach high school, for some students it might be a bit too late to develop an appreciation or interest in coding.

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