Stop Teaching Girls to Code
Jessica Carew Kraft
5514

Thanks for this. Coding is an important tool and understanding the underlying structures and systems that drive applications is very helpful for anyone who wants to design or manage the structures and systems we use. As you say, the tools will definitely change, and screen time can be so damaging in excess. Screen time will probably be the big regret of parents in this generation. It’s important to separate healthy from unhealthy screen time. Giving a child unmoderated access to a computer is like having your refrigerator stocked with candy and soda and expecting a child to only eat the apples.

At the same time, encouraging girls to code is important in relation to the other messages they receive in society. Coding can be one of many ways for them to think structurally about the world, and to think about data systems. (Yes they can get that in nature too, and they should!) But maybe “don’t teach children to code” is a healthier mantra that doesn’t trigger negative stereotypes about women’s ability to think in complex, structured ways. (I get it… headlines…) In fact, if given the chance I bet women might develop programming languages and toolkits that are more powerful and rational than the software languages men have developed (maybe they have/are?).

BTW, I’d also like to stop teaching young girls to wear make-up, be fashionable, and walk in heels. But that’s another story isn’t it?

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