Of all the creative methods out there to introduce programming concepts to young children and students—everything from interactive robots and online games to visual code editor programs and hands-on kits—no one has ever thought of leveraging a medium as analog as a card game.
Littlecodr, a new Kickstarter campaign from tech entrepreneur Nathan Slee and health IT professional Dr. Alexandra Greenhill, aims to fund a card game that introduces the fundamentals of coding to kids age 4 through 8. Greenhill developed a version of the card game when teaching her own three children to code.
“This game allowed them to physically interact with critical coding concepts like linear thinking and debugging, with the added bonus of letting them do just about anything they wanted,” she explained in the project’s promotional video. “We loved the idea of controlling your own ‘app.’ ”
Littlecodr uses a combination of Action Cards, Mission Cards and Lab Cards to create scenarios around coding and logic, planning and linear thinking, prototyping, and problem-solving. Kids play by devising a set of instructions—walking left, right, forward or backward—to get from Point A to B in a room while navigating obstacles, tweaking or in essence debugging the sequence of instructions until the code works.
Along with former Toronto school board trustee Will Lawrence and distribution partner Panda Games, the Littlecodr team has finished pre-production and design work, and is now asking for enough donations and pre-orders to create 2,000 sets of the game for Panda Games to manufacture and distribute. As of June 11, the Kickstarter campaign has raised close to US$5,800 of its US$8,054 (CAD$10,000) goal.
More details about Littlecodr are available here.