Ready, Set, Code! (Heather Catchpole & Nicola O’Brien, CSIRO Publishing)
Ready, Set, Code! teaches computer programming skills to kids aged 8–12 using the open source Scratch language created by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. This book presents introductory programming concepts and the Scratch coding is incredibly easy to grasp; the simple drag-and-drop interface means children and adults with zero programming experience will ‘get it’ straight away. Kids are encouraged to create their own versions of real-world technology by building a chatbot, making digital art, creating music and mapping locations. The book goes beyond Scratch to explore coding for the BBC-designed Micro:bit device (not included with the book, but a good investment), which lets kids think beyond programming for the screen, and also looks at App Inventor for Android to create programs on smartphones. These fun projects are presented alongside facts about technology that will engage inquisitive minds. Teachers will find Ready, Set, Code! useful because it connects to the Australian curriculum and can be used in conjunction with other children’s books focused on Scratch programming such as DK’s Computer Coding for Kids.
Andrew Wrathall is the production manager at Books+Publishing and has a degree in computer science