JavaScript is a coding language used for building dynamic websites and applications. It’s known for its widespread use and versatility. JavaScript is in high demand so it’s also an excellent language for kids to kickstart their coding journey.

📌 [Download] JavaScript Projects Source Code Get the full source code for seven JavaScript project examples. Download Now

In this article, we’ll explore JavaScript for kids and why your child should learn JavaScript coding.

What is JavaScript?

JavaScript is a programming language that enables developers to create and construct complicated, dynamic web page features. 

Since its release by Netscape in 1995, it has become a fundamental language for creating dynamic and interactive content on the internet.

JavaScript is primarily used as a client-side scripting language. This means that it runs on the user’s web browser rather than on the server. It allows developers to create interactive elements and dynamic content that respond to user actions without requiring a page refresh. 

Many interactive websites and games use JavaScript to create a great experience for users. Whenever a webpage updates content, displays animated graphics, shows interactive maps, or performs other similar tasks, JavaScript is often at the center of it. 

Consider JavaScript the main layer of the web technology cake. The other two layers are HTML and CSS. Because JavaScript is such a huge part of web development, it’s one of the most commonly used languages by professional developers.

According to a survey conducted by the State of JS, 97% out of 23,000 developers have a working knowledge of JavaScript.

How Proficient are you at JavaScript

While JavaScript is used a lot in web development, its applications are not limited to this.

JavaScript is a versatile language that can be used for various purposes. Its applications are not limited to web development, it also includes server-side development (using Node.js), mobile app development, and even in non-web environments like game development. Programmers use JavaScript to control advanced devices and robots as well.

Kids who learn JavaScript have a head start on careers with future technologies in addition to building websites.

Why Kids Should Learn JavaScript

Programming languages come in various shapes and sizes, but JavaScript stands out for its simplicity and relevance.

Learning JavaScript could unlock a passion that turns into a career, but there are also many skills that will benefit your child right now such as:

Gain Coding & Web Development Skills

When your child learns JavaScript, they will gain tangible skills in coding and building websites. They will understand how to navigate a coding environment, how web browsers work, and grasp simple coding commands. This sets them up for a successful coding journey.

Practice Computational Thinking

Coding has a distinct advantage in teaching computational thinking because it is a major component of every stage of coding, from beginning to end. In JavaScript, students have to think through how the browser will understand and translate their code.

Foster Problem-Solving and Logical Reasoning

Kids will discover new ways to tackle challenges and solve problems. Initially, JavaScript programming for kids involves solving simple problems. Once your child understands the problem-solving framework, they develop logical reasoning capabilities.

Logical reasoning helps kids think for themselves so they can differentiate between courses of action and evaluate the pros and cons. Through logical reasoning, your child will learn self-accountability and come up with more effective solutions.

Develop Confidence and Perseverance

Coding and learning JavaScript also encourage perseverance, as there is a lot of trial and error involved with programming. When it comes to coding, not every solution is simple or straightforward.

Debugging why the code didn’t work or work as expected takes a lot of perseverance. Kids often have to repeat the debugging process, sometimes several times, until they find the best solution. These types of skills will be useful to them in school and career too.

Recommended: 10 Best Kids Coding Languages

Web Development with HTML, CSS, and JavaScript

Initially, JavaScript was a scripting language designed to help validate the information that users input into forms without slowing down loading times. With time, JavaScript evolved to become a full-blown programming language. Today, developers use JavaScript, HTML, and CSS to create web and mobile applications that can process user actions without needing to load a new page. JavaScript can also be used to build Artificial Intelligence tools.

While JavaScript does have uses outside of web development, its functions for websites are still the most common use for this language. For web development, JavaScript, HTML, and CSS interact with each other to create a website’s front-end design (how the website looks to visitors). They work together by sharing information to create style, content, and interactivity for projects.

If your child already has some coding experience, JavaScript is a powerful language to add. Learning JavaScript allows kids to create interactive websites that are both more interesting to visitors and more fun to create.

JavaScript Code Structure

JavaScript code structure is organized in a way that allows developers to write clean, readable, and maintainable code. Understanding the basic structure of JavaScript code is essential for effective programming. Below are key components and principles that constitute the structure of JavaScript code:

javascript coding structure for kids

JavaScript Concepts for Kids and Beginners

JavaScript includes unique terms and syntax. Learning these terminologies and concepts will help your child increase their computing vocabulary and understand the JavaScript framework.

These are some of the most basic concepts that kids should learn first when being introduced to JavaScript:

Script

A script is a sequence or program of instructions that third-party programs (like a browser) interpret and process, rather than a computer processor. Example:

js_script

<script>
document.getElementById(“demo”).innerHTML = “Hello JavaScript!”;
</script>

Functions

A function is a series of instructions that help computers perform a task. Example:

js_function

function myFunction(p1, p2) {
  return p1 * p2;   // The function returns the product of p1 and p2
}

Class

A class in JavaScript creates objects by organizing data. Example:

js_class

class Car {
  constructor(name, year) {
    this.name = name;
    this. year = year;
  }
}

Conditionals

Conditionals are statements that control behavior in JavaScript. These statements determine if certain code should run. Example:

js_conditional

if (hour < 18) {
  greeting = “Good day”;
}

Scope

Scope determines and manages the availability of the variables. Example:

js_scope

{
  let x = 2;
}
// x can NOT be used here outside of the {}

Array

An array is a single variable that helps accumulate multiple elements. Example:

js_array

const cars = [“Saab”, “Volvo”, “BMW”];

Console

The console is a function that helps display variables to the users: Example:

js_console

console.log(“Hello world!”);

JavaScript Libraries and Frameworks

A rich ecosystem of libraries and frameworks has emerged around JavaScript, making development more efficient.

Frameworks are a set of pre-written code for programmers to easily set up the foundation for their program or website.

Libraries are code snippets prewritten for multiple usages. These libraries help perform the function for faster development and reduce vulnerabilities to human error.

Popular JavaScript libraries and frameworks include:

How to Teach Kids JavaScript

Step 1: Set the Stage, Start With the Prerequisites
Before diving into JavaScript, it’s essential to lay the foundation. Kids should learn basic typing skills and be familiar with using a web browser. Explain how the computer, web browsers, and the internet function and work together.

Step 2: The ABCs of JavaScript
Introduce the fundamental concepts of JavaScript in a kid-friendly manner. Break down the language into bite-sized pieces, covering variables, data types, and the other JS concepts we listed above. Utilize fun examples and analogies to make these concepts easily digestible for your child.

Step 3: Hands-On Coding Activities
Learning by doing is crucial for kids. Provide a series of hands-on coding activities designed to reinforce the concepts introduced. These activities can start with one or two concepts, allowing kids to see the immediate results of their code.

Step 4: Put it Together With Engaging Projects
Once kids have a solid grasp on individual concepts, choose a project that puts multiple skills together. Projects like creating a basic website, a simple animation, or an interactive quiz can capture a child’s interest and demonstrate the real-world applications of coding.

Step 5: Add Resources That Reinforce Learning
Curate your own list of JavaScript platforms, games, books, and interactive tutorials specifically for your child. Consider the way they learn best and make sure they are actively engaged.

Step 6: Help Them Overcome Challenges
Acknowledge that learning to code can be challenging, but emphasize the importance of perseverance. Support them in overcoming challenges and utilize educators and online resources to help.

This is the same process we use for students in our coding classes for kids and it works!

Official JavaScript Resources

These official resources provide information and documentation on the JavaScript languages:

What Age Can Kids Learn JavaScript?

Kids can start learning JavaScript as young as 8-10 years old. 

Coding truly is like learning a foreign language, and research has shown that younger kids are especially adept at learning new languages. 

Since JavaScript is a text-based language, typing skills are important to consider. If your child has good typing skills, JavaScript is a great language to learn. If they struggle with typing, a block-based language like Scratch might be a better place to start their coding journey.  

JavaScript for Elementary School (Ages 8-10)

In coding for elementary students, it’s important to focus on the key basics of JavaScript, including variables, functions, and loops. Syntax is also important for this age group, as they need to learn the rules for typing JavaScript correctly. Even kids as young as 8 can use the fundamentals of JavaScript to create simple animated games or websites with interactive features.

JavaScript for Middle School (Ages 11-13)

Coding in middle school can dive further into how JavaScript works with HTML and CSS to create more complex and interactive websites. Advanced functions, intervals, and event handlers allow kids to create interactive games and to control animations within websites and games.

JavaScript for High School (Ages 14-18)

In addition to all of the fundamentals that every student needs to learn about JavaScript, coding in high school can start to utilize libraries like