There are so many terrific resources available to help teach kids skills that are essential to today’s workforce that didn’t exist when we were in school. A big one is coding. All of the coding I’ve learned for running Family Fun Vancouver is self-taught and came via the way of many errors.

Kids are fascinated with coding. They have a natural affinity to the digital world. Why not take this time – during COVID-19 – and help your child acquire a new skill set. The possibilities with coding are endless and we’ve discovered a whole list host of FREE (or discounted) websites to help kids learn the basics of coding. And if you want to use an app, rather than a website, we’ve got an article all about FREE (or discounted) apps to help kids learn coding.

Elementary / Middle School Age:

Code Academy: With more than 45 million users, Codecademy lets kids dive right in and take courses that teach you everything from HTML & CSS, JavaScript, and SQL to Bash/Shell, Python, Ruby and C++.

Code Avengers: This New Zealand based site provides courses focusing on game design, C++, HTML, Python, and more, available in multiple languages. Offering material for a wide range of ages and experience levels, this site is a great choice for all coders!

Code Combat: This is for those kids with an adventurer’s heart! Through CodeCombat, students learn real programming languages like Python, JavaScript, and HTML while solving fun puzzles in an adventure-combat type game.

Codemoji: Targeted at kids age 6-12, is a unique site where kids can learn the foundations of coding in HTML, CSS, and JavaScript. Using drag-and-drop emojis, kids will be able to work through beginner, intermediate, and advanced level beginner courses to further their understanding of coding concepts and how to use them.

CodeMonkey: As a beginner-friendly coding game, CodeMonkey gives kids the opportunity to learn real-world programming languages and basic computer science concepts by following the adventures of a cute little monkey!

Khan Academy: One of the original free online-learning institutions, with step-by-step video tutorials, kids can learn to program using JavaScript and ProcessingJS, or learn to create webpages using HTML and CSS with content designed specifically to help new coders.

Lightbot: Using fun and visually engaging puzzles, kids can get a chance to practice sequencing, conditionals, recursive loops, and more. By issuing commands to navigate a robot through various stages and solving challenges, kids can learn to code in a kid-friendly environment.

Robocode: Ever heard of robot fighting? Well here is a cool alternative! RoboCode lets kids build a robot in Java or .NET in order to compete against other robots.

Scratch: As a programming language that has already touched the lives of millions of children, Scratch is a great tool for beginner programmers. Scratch offers block-based visual programming that is both simple-to-learn and very flexible.

High School Age:

aGupieWare: An independent app developer that created a curriculum based on the free courses offered by Stanford, MIT, Carnegie Mellon, Berkeley and Columbia, this program is broken into 15 courses ranging in complexity and focus. Perfect for anyone looking to expand their qualifications.

BitDegree: As one of the most popular eLearning platforms out there, BitDegree offers a multitude of fun computer science courses!

edX: Another leading online-learning platform that is open source, edX was founded by Harvard University and MIT, so you can trust you’ll learn cutting-edge skills and theories from the 50+ schools included in their material.

GitHub: While this may not be the first site you think of when wanting to learn how to code, it is definitely worth mentioning! GitHub allows students to collaborate on cool projects and look at the projects of other individuals for reference.

Stack Overflow: This is a resource for students who want to learn a programming language by themselves, but still want the support of an experienced community of people! StackOverflow is a question and answer site meant to answer a diverse range of computer science questions.

Coding Websites for Kids:


Looking for more tips on how to keep your kids occupied during the COVID-19 crisis? Find our best ideas, activities and inspiration here!