Fun online game that teaches kids coding using a real programming language

App of the Week
Formats: Website + mobile site for tablets only (no app, just go directly to the website using the chrome/safari app on the tablet).

Website: www.playcodemonkey.com

What does it help with? Learning to code is becoming a part of the curriculum in K-12, a trend which is expanding rapidly around the world. Code literacy is considered essential not only for future software engineers but for many other occupations as well. A secondary benefit afforded to students learning to code is the development of algorithmic thinking as a basis for problem solving. This type of thinking is a crucial enabler for obtaining important 21st-century skills.

What grade and age range?  3-9 (ages 9-16)

What subject, topic, what standards is it mapped to? Code Monkey is aligned to Common Core state standards in Math and ELA, and CSTA k-12 computer science standards.

What lesson time does it use? Can be used in a range of lesson times, starting from math and computers to after school and home use.

What is the pricing model? Please see here

Are there services around it? Teacher dashboard, lesson plans. Grading system, support, challenge builder. Read more about it here.

What makes this coding tool unique? Most coding products for kids these days use visual blocks to simulate coding. However in CodeMonkey we teach a real text based programming language called CoffeeScript, which is a language that is used in the industry and can be used to create online apps and games, which is eventually what we want our users to do.

The product’s unique advantage is that It’s a game, a fun game, and kids really want to get those bananas so they want to keep playing. They learn complex topics like functions and nested loops without realizing that it’s a complex concept to understand.

A description of the characteristics--how is it designed for user interface, user experience?

The game is self guided with instructions and hints that take the student through the process of learning everything they need right inside the game.

However when a teacher uses our lesson plans they will give the student extra knowledge that is not necessarily available to them without the help and the instructions of the teachers, like deeper understanding of the topics and how this relates to our world.

Teacher reviews:

"I have been using CodeMonkey with grades 3+, the students and teachers love it! It's my first year coding at age 29. Kids can code and I can too!"

- Megan McNinch, Sugar Creek Elementary School in Fort Mill, SC

“I was glad to see a coding game creating equally high engagement with girls! And the linear path makes guidance easy even with large student groups.”

- Pi-Chuan Chang, Ph.D, Programming Teacher & Engineer, AltSchool

“What I like best about CodeMonkey is its engagement level, but most importantly the realistic coding students do in a text-based editor. The game-like quality makes them willing to take risks and persevere.”

- Diane Main, Director of Learning, Innovation and Design @ The Harker School, San Jose, California

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