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What is a good program to expose students to webdesign?

Posted on 2011-05-04
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I have some second graders that i am trying to get interested in web develovement.  Does anyone know of any programs, books, tutorials or web sites that are directed at getting 8 or 9 year olds exposed to web development?

TIA
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Question by:southray
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I pondered the same question about how to introduce my daughter (who is 8) to programming in general.  I settled on teaching her Flash.  It's a nice combination between a language that's similar in structure to many other modern languages (Java, JavaScript, C# etc.) but easier to learn due to the graphical nature of the Flash tool itself.  It's also inherently relevant for a Web based world.

For specific materials I used this book: ActionScript 3.0 for Adobe Flash CS4 Professional Classroom in a Book (http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0321579216).  It's so far been very successful.  None of the concepts have been over her head and we found it easy to deviate from the assigned projects and modify them to do new things.  I should point out I'm a developer myself (although I don't know Flash) so it was a case of me being able to quickly read and understand the concepts and help her understand them.

The biggest downside for Flash is probably that to get the graphical environment you need to buy Flash itself.  Although if that's not practical, the compiler is freely available for download from Adobe (http://opensource.adobe.com/wiki/display/flexsdk/Downloads), so with any text editor and that compiler you could build any ActionScript classes you wished.  But in that case you'd want a different book, since the one I recommended assumes you're using the Flash application itself.

Hope that helps,

Doug
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