EARLY CHILDHOOD LITERACY: As students begin to learn math and Chinese, they're also starting Scratch, BloombergBusiness reports. Preschool coding classes are on the rise in China.
Banking on predictions that programming will be a common denominator among the majority of future jobs, Chinese parents and private education providers have started coding classes for children as young as six. Coding is not yet part of China's official curriculum, so private education providers host the majority of preschool coding classes. They believe it is essential for being competitive in a global technology economy. The emphasis among educators and parents, Bloomberg reports, is on games and their creation as an entry point into coding. China trails the US and Europe in integrating coding into the classroom.
"Coding is like a third language that this generation should master after English and Mandarin," said coding instructor Michelle Sun in a video for Bloomberg. Sun said she has taught 2,500 preschoolers to date.
And something that all of them may want: the Official Scratch Jr. Book, by Marina Umaschi Bers and (Scratch founder) Mitchel Resnick. Just out this month!