No Starch Press sent me their Python for Kids book to review on my geek dad blog. I think it’s part of their plan to turn all kids into geeks. Python For Kids, written by Jason R. Briggs, is an introductory book about the Python computer programming language. The book features fun examples, colorful illustrations, and kid friendly explanation. The book is intended for children aged 10 and up. However, it’s also suitable for adults who want to learn how to program with Python. For instance, I don’t know the language and I can see myself using this book if I wanted to get started on Python. Python for Kids: A Playful Introduction to Programming is available now with a list price of $34.95. You can currently purchase it on Amazon for $18.52.
In case you’re wondering, Python is a programming language that lets you work more quickly and integrate systems more effectively. Python runs on Windows, Linux/Unix, Mac OS X, and has been ported to the Java and .NET virtual machines. Python is free to use — even for commercial products. According to Wikipedia, Python emphasizes code readability, and its syntax is clear and expressive.
Even though Python is used by organizations like Google, Yahoo and NASA, the language is also something kids can learn. Python is an easy-to-learn and highly readable language. It is designed to have an uncluttered visual layout, and frequently uses English keywords where other languages use punctuation.
I skimmed through Python for Kids and I found it very kid friendly. It features colorful headings, illustrations, and examples, and text that is easy for children to read. And more importantly, the explanation of Python is easy to understand for kids and parents new to programming. By the end of the book your kids will have programmed two complete games: a clone of Pong and Mr. Stick Man Races for the Exit.
Python for Kids Topics
- Use fundamental data structures like lists, tuples, and maps
- Organize and reuse code with functions and modules
- Use control structures like loops and conditional statements
- Draw shapes and patterns with Python’s turtle module
- Create games, animations, and other graphical wonders with tkinter (GUI programming toolkit)
More information: Python for Kids: A Playful Introduction to Programming