How Coding Can Help Students with Learning Challenges Develop Focus
Experts agree that coding skills will be highly valued in the future. In addition to equipping kids with important career skills, coding also helps students develop a wide range of other competencies. These include focus, higher order thinking, organisation and teamwork.
Students with learning challenges stand to gain much from learning to code, particularly when it comes to developing concentration. Better focus can help these students improve their academic performance across all subjects.
Here’s how coding helps students with learning challenges develop focus.
When students get a sense of satisfaction from what they’re learning, they are far more likely to stick with it. Coding is something many students find fun and engaging. It doesn’t feel like learning, and as a result they pick up maths concepts without even realising it.
Thinking mathematically is an awesome skill that is of great benefit to students. Having a strong interest in their work is also very important for children with learning issues who can feel disengaged academically.
Students with learning difficulties are often highly creative, but they may have trouble finding an outlet to express this creativity. Coding gives students a wonderful way to express themselves by allowing them to build something new from scratch.
Unlike other creative activities, students are not limited by the materials at their disposal. Possibilities for coding in the virtual world are endless, and this is very attractive for children. Being creative thinkers encourages students to experiment and explore ideas, and this in turn helps them stay focused on a project.
One reason students experience learning difficulties is because their learning style doesn’t match that of a traditional classroom. This may be because they are hands-on learners who acquire skills through ‘doing.’
Coding is a very hands-on activity which requires students to try different approaches and develop knowledge as they go. They have to adapt quickly and find new ways of doing things when something doesn’t work. This teaches them to work their way through a problem, increasing perseverance and concentration.
The way students feel about themselves has a tremendous impact on how they relate to learning. When students find an area they enjoy and feel competent in, their self-esteem grows. Coding is great for confidence because it helps students recognise that learning is all about trial and error.
Students who enjoy creating their own games, apps and animations are more likely to apply themselves and practice coding in their own time. This also builds independence. Working with confidence on their own projects outside school hours is an excellent way for kids with learning challenges to develop focus.
Coding allows students to collaborate with others on a range of projects. In teams, they can take on different tasks to build something together. Working together on fun projects allows students with learning challenges to gain valuable experiences interacting with others.
The ability to work in a team is an essential life skill. The increased sense of competency students gain through coding allows them to contribute as part of a team. This in turn helps students further develop their concentration and focus.
Coding can be very beneficial for students with learning challenges.