The Movement to Teach Programming to Everyone

There is growing interest around the world in increasing the population's general exposure to and and abilities with computer programming. Among its many values, computer programming is the primary means by which the results of the information explosion of the last 30 years are becoming harvested and then elevated to further gain. This page identifies and analyzes some of the many efforts currently underway.

Does this interest in computer programming parallel in some way the social movement that led to teaching text and mathematics literacy to everyone through free public elementary schools in the 1800's in the United States?


Friedman, T. (2012, September 8). New Rules. New York Times.

Finley, K. (2012, September 14). Estonia Reprograms First Graders as Web Coders. Wired.

Rushkoff, D. & Purvis, L. (2010). Program or Be Programmed: Ten Commands for a Digital Age. OR Books. Video by Rushkoff,

Finley, K. (2012, August 15). Yes, Virginia, Regular Folks Can Be Taught to Code. Wired.

Nine-year old whiz-kid writes iPhone application.

Norvig, P. (2001). Teach Yourself Programming in Ten Years.

Programs and Projects

Wilson C. & Baker, F. (2012, September 11). All Hands on Deck! Scaling K-12 Computer Science Education.

Finley, K. (2012, May 26). Facebook Engineer Turns 5-Year-Olds Into Hackers. Wired.

Finley, K. (2012, August 14). Coders Get Instant Gratification With Khan Academy Programming

Instructional Tools and Resources

Code Hero, learn programming and gaming.

Logo Programming.

Lego Mindstorms.

Alice, teaches students computer programming in a 3D environment.

Kodu, create games on the PC and XBOX via a simple visual programming language.

MIT App Inventor which seems focused on programming for Android phones but may provide other options,

Scratch, programming language and instruction for all ages.

Code Academy, online instant programming and execution of code

Teaching Kids Programming

Web Turtle, Bill Kendrick.

Overview of several programming approaches.


Rushkoff, D. & Purvis, L. (2010). Program or Be Programmed: Ten Commands for a Digital Age. OR Books.

Lauren Ipsum, a children's book.