Best Coding Apps for Elementary Students

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Updated in April 8, 2022

Below is a handy collection featuring some of the best apps to teach elementary students coding. The apps offer a wide variety of interactive games, puzzles, quizzes, activities, creative projects, tutorials, and lessons to help elementary students develop their coding skills and become better programmers. 

Almost all of these apps do not require any prior computer science knowledge. Kids start with learning coding basics and move progressively to higher coding levels to the point where they can write their own code to design games and apps. 

Coding apps for elementary students

As elementary students engage with the coding changes and activities offered by these apps, they will learn a wide variety of coding concepts (e.g., debugging, sequencing, loops, events,  functiona, arrays, etc) and develop a number of key skills that will help them with their overall learning (e.g., problem solving, communication skills, logical thinking, strategic reasoning, higher level thinking, critical thinking, etc.).

1. Kodable

Kodable is a comprehensive computer science curriculum for kids 4-10 years old. The program is meant to help kids learn everything about coding from the basics all the way up to writing Javascript code. Kodable enables kids to build their own games using a kids-friendly coding interface. 

As kids practice their coding skills, they get to learn various concepts including sequence, algorithmic operations, syntax, conditional logic statements, properties, methods, classes and subclasses, and more.

2. Hopscotch

Hopscotch is another good app for helping elementary students learn coding. It provides kids with all the coding knowledge they need to engage in amazing creative projects. No prior computer knowledge is required. Kids learn how to use their coding skills to create interactive games, design beautiful pieces of art, tell stories, and more. 

As kids 'become better programmers, Hopscotch will challenge [them] to create increasingly advanced games and apps. These skills will help [them] in high school, college, and beyond'.

3. Daisy the Dinosaur

Daisy the Dinosaur helps elementary students use coding skills to animate Daisy and get her to dance on their screens. While interacting with Daisy, kids learn basic coding skills related to loops and sequencing and as they take more challenges and activities they will progressively develop their coding practice and become better programmers. 

4. ScratchJr

ScratchJr is designed to help kids 5 to 7 years old learn coding skills through creating interactive stories and games. Using Scratch programming language, kids engage in fun and creative coding-based activities where they get to solve problems, overcome challenges, design projects, and 'express themselves creatively on the computer'. Besides learning coding, the app's activities will also help kids develop their math and language skills. 

5. Lightbot Jr

Lightbot Jr is designed for kids 4 to 8 years old. The app uses game mechanics to engage students in working on challenging puzzles and quizzes. Kids can either play as BoyBot or Girlbot and they can compete with each other in the multiple players mode trying to solve as many puzzles as possible. 

Coding skills targeted by Lightbot include debugging problems, sequencing instructions, executing loops, creating reusable procedures, and more. The app also supports various languages including Portuguese, German, Polish, Danish, Dutch, Chinese, Italian, Hindi, Swedish, Finnish, and more.

6. Code Spark Academy

Code Spark Academy is for kids 5 to 10 years old. It offers a wide variety of activities and games 'designed to teach kids the fundamentals of computer science and introduce them to the world of STEM.' 

Some of the main features provided by Code Spark include: Puzzles (help with learning the concepts of sequencing, loops, events, and conditionals), Explore (challenges and games to teach boolean logic, automation, inequalities, and variables), Story Maker (create interactive stories with music and speech bubbles), Game Maker (create arcade-style games), Adventure Game (use storytelling and game design to create interactive games and stories), and more.

7. Tynker

Tynker is another great app for helping elementary students learn coding through games.Kids get to fly drones, mode Minecraft, control robots, and explore STEM in fun and engaging ways. Tynker offers different features including: coding games (help kids learn to program AR, games and apps), Minecraft coding (design Minecraft skins, mobs, and blocks and launch them), crystal clash (write code to compete with your friends), robotics programming (use coding to program drone flight paths and stunts), learning with Barbie (use coding to animate characters and create music), and more.

8. Box Island

Box Island teaches kids the basics of coding through gameplay. There are 100 levels kids have to go through, but only the first 10 levels are free. As kids engage with coding challenges  they get to develop the following coding competencies: algorithmic thinking, pattern recognition, sequencing, loops, conditionals, debugging, among others.

9. Code Karts

Code Karts helps introduce kids to pre-coding using a collection of challenging puzzles presented in the form of a raceway. Kids are required to use direction bricks to get the car to the finish line safely. To do so, they need to overcome various types of obstacles and challenges on the way prompting them to use their logical and coding skills to find solutions. The app is also available in over 20 languages.

10. Hopster Coding Safari for Kids

Hopster is a pre-coding logic game designed specifically to help kids learn the fundamentals of coding. Kids are required to solve various types of problems in order to get animals to their own places. As kids solve puzzles they face even more challenging ones thus learning the basics of coding in an immersive and progressive way. Key coding skills covered include problem solving, planning, decomposition, pattern recognition, abstraction, algorithms, and more.

11. Coding for Kids

Coding for kids, as its name indicates, is all about helping kids learn the basics of coding and programming using fun and interactive games. Basic coding concepts taught include: loops, debugging, arrays, functions, sequences, among others. Skills targeted include developing kids ability to recognize patterns, order actions in a logical sequence, problem solving, logical thinking, and more.

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