Explain programing to your kid

A program is an algorithm, or set of instructions, that has been written in a special code that a machine can read. You can make up your own code and write a program with it to help a friend solve a scavenger hunt!

An algorithm is a list of steps that tells you what to do. A recipe is an algorithm and sheet music is an algorithm, too. Algorithms are the first step in planning a computer program

Debugging is an important part of coding. It is easy to make errors when translating algorithms into code. This activity will help you find and fix the mistakes, or bugs in the instructions.

Input is the information you give to a computer, such as the text you type on a keyboard, and output is the information the computer gives you, such as what appears on the screen.

Events are actions that interrupt a program and make something happen. If you want to have the score in your video game change when the main character gets hit by a meteor, then you will need an event!

Hardware is any part of a computer that you can touch. Most pieces of hardware, such as a keyboard, come with little bits of code, called drivers, that help the computer know what to do with them. Different types of hardware can be used to input or output information or to help the computer run.

A function is a set of instructions that you give a name. You only have to code your function once, then you can use it over and over again.

Variables allow parts of a program to change, even while it is running. All you have to do is choose a word to hold the place of the part that will change—this word is your variable.

You might have heard the word “decomposition” when talking about how food or leaves break down into compost. In computer science, instead of breaking down food, coders decompose problems into smaller pieces that are easier to solve.

Abstraction is looking at the big picture, rather than all of the little details. When coding, programmers will often use abstraction to make a basic program that can be reused.

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