How to introduce Algorithms to Children

April 28, 2022

The term “Algorithm” may seem pretty irrelevant to children’s education (especially when they are in elementary schools) but it does hold huge importance in the field of programming. Coding has become the basic technological literacy. To write a flawless code, you should know how to write an algorithm first. Algorithms are present all around us, orchestrating everything from technology used by us to the everyday decisions made by us. It’s necessary for your children to have a clear idea of algorithmic concepts before they enter the world of programming.


Let’s go through a set of stepwise tips to explain algorithms to children. Explain the basic Definition of “Algorithm” to children This can be deemed the first step to introduce coding to children. Your children should know the definition of “algorithm” before they start writing one. An algorithm can be said to be a set of detailed step-wise instructions to solve a specific problem or complete a specific task. Encourage your children to think about Algorithms in a general sense It’s necessary for children to think about algorithms in a general sense to get a better understanding of the subject. Algorithms are present everywhere. A simple recipe to make a particular food-item can be said to be a type of algorithm. A simple example of an algorithm based on your children’s weekday morning routine is provided below for an easy reference.


  1. Start
  2. Get up
  3. Shower
  4. Get dressed
  5. Eat breakfast
  6. If weather is “sunny”, Walk to the school,  else, Go to the school with parents
  7. Stop


You see that this is an algorithm in the general sense depicting your children’s weekday morning routine. Introduce the basic Algorithms used in Computer Programming to children After your children get accustomed to the basic algorithmic concepts in the general sense, it’s necessary that they start thinking of implementing algorithms in computer programming. But remember that this is just the start and hence, their algorithms should be based on simple problems. Introduce them to such simple problems.